6 cybersecurity start-ups shaking up the industry

2 Jul 2020

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We look at the six cybersecurity start-ups named as Technology Pioneers by the World Economic Forum.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) recently announced its Technology Pioneers for 2020, highlighting 100 start-ups from around the world that are focusing on new technologies and innovations.

Last week, we took a look at six AI start-ups from the list, and now we’re turning our attention to six cybersecurity start-ups that the WEF has recognised as ones to watch in the infosec industry. This includes early-stage companies focusing on a wide range of applications from critical infrastructure to social media.


Maryland-based Dragos is a cybersecurity business focusing on critical infrastructure managed by industrial organisations. This includes water supplies, power grids and other industrial working environments.

The start-up was founded in 2016 by Jon Lavender, Justin Cavinee, Matthew Luallen and Robert Lee. Its security software and services aim to arm industrial defenders around the world with the knowledge and tools to protect their systems effectively.

Dragos’s founding team have experience responding to power grid attacks. Investors in the start-up include DataTribe, AllegisCyber, Energy Impact Partners, Emerson, National Grid Partners and Schweitzer Engineering Labs.


Headquartered in the US, Enveil was founded by Ellison Anne Williams in 2016. The firm uses homomorphic encryption to enable entities to securely derive insights, cross-match and search data assets without revealing the contents of the search itself or compromising the security or ownership of the underlying data.

Its technology is being used by companies to securely and privately query data across privacy jurisdictions and keeps sensitive search terms encrypted throughout the processing lifecycle.

The Enveil technology was developed by members of the US intelligence community and built out in the private sector by a team of experts with backgrounds in maths, algorithmics and machine learning.


Founded in Israel by Dudu Mimran and Ronen Yehoshua, Morphisec is a cybersecurity firm that provides endpoint threat prevention by making sure attackers can’t find the targets they are seeking.

The firm was founded in 2014 and has since built a suite of defence tools to help protect enterprises against targeted attacks using the concept of polymorphism – which involves turning the attackers’ tactics back on themselves.

Morphisec’s moving target defence solution includes virtual desktop protection, cloud workload protection and server protection. The firm’s technology has been used by companies including Maersk, Motorola and Yaskawa.


Based in Cheltenham in the UK, Ripjar has developed products to help respond to financial crime and manage risk.

The company, which was founded in 2013 by Jeremy Annis, Jeremy Laycock, Rob Biggs and Tom Griffin, uses data intelligence to provide companies with solutions to protect themselves in real time from evolving risks that threaten their growth and value.

It brings together technologists, data scientists and analysts to build products that change the way criminal activities are detected and prevented. The founders previously worked together at the British Government Communications Headquarters.

Ripjar’s partners include Accenture, Dow Jones Risk & Compliance, LexisNexis, PwC and BAE Systems. Its Labyrinth platform has been built to empower developers and software engineers to integrate on-premise data sources, add new analytics and data visualisations, and customise and tailor workflows to differing organisational needs.


SecurityScorecard was founded in New York in 2013 by Aleksandr Yampolskiy and Sam Kassoumeh. The firm helps organisations to understand and reduce their cyber risks, with the goal of saving customers time and resources.

The start-up has more than 1,000 organisations using its rating technology for self-monitoring, third-party risk management, board reporting and cyber-insurance underwriting. Some of SecurityScorecard’s customers include Symantec, PepsiCo, Netflix, McDonald’s, KPMG and Intuit.

As well as its security ratings platform, the firm also provides professional services and a platform called Atlas that enables companies to accelerate the cybersecurity questionnaire process.


Based in Baltimore, ZeroFox is a social media security company that helps organisations to identify, manage and mitigate social media-based cyber threats. The firm was founded in 2013 by Chris Cullison, Evan Blair, Hillary Herlehy, James Foster and Robert Francis.

With more and more organisations relying on digital platforms to engage with customers, interact with employees and grow their businesses, ZeroFox is looking to stop people from exploiting these public platforms to launch attacks and profit from fraud and scams.

Using diverse data sources and AI-based analysis, ZeroFox’s platform identifies and remediates targeted phishing attacks, credential compromise, data theft, impersonations, brand hijacking and other threats. The firm also monitors dark web chatter for brand and intellectual property mentions, attack plans and adversary motivations to try and pre-emptively prevent attacks.

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Kelly Earley was a journalist with Silicon Republic