The ideation of Synack could be traced back to my childhood roots; I was just 14-years old when I started my first web hosting and development company that I eventually built to over a thousand customers, and sold my freshman year of college. It was the fascination of locking down these shared web hosting servers that led me to falling in love with the world of cyber security, a nascent industry that at the time was still inventing itself. Upon accepting admission into a highly-sought-after fellowship with the NSA, the “ROTC of Cyber Security”, I knew this was the industry I would help define.
Fast forward to 2013, after spending over four years combating terrorists on the front-lines through state-sponsored hacking, and being exposed to a world unbeknownst to most, I gained an appreciation for just how successful attackers can be when they are highly motivated with the right incentives in place, and equipped with data and tools to help them be more effective. I thought to myself that it is simply impossible to defend against this sophistication of an attack without having an incredible offense on your side. And it was then, with my former NSA colleague, and now Synack co-founder/CTO, that Synack was born.
Fast forward almost four years; that dream has become a reality. And today, we’re announcing that we’ve completed a momentous Series C funding round led by Microsoft Ventures, with participation from HP Enterprise, Singtel Group, and all of Synack’s prior VC investors, to raise $21.25 Million. This brings Synack’s total funding to over $55 million.
We’re also bringing on Gary Steele (CEO of Proofpoint) to join Synack’s board of directors to support us through this phase of rapid growth. We have no doubt that with Gary’s deep experience growing and scaling enterprise software companies, that he will be a tremendous asset for the company. Microsoft will also join Synack’s board, bringing a wealth of expertise scaling SaaS companies and building products tailored for the enterprise.
This new announcement has led me to reflect on how far we’ve come and what we’ve accomplished since we started in 2013.
- Synack has successfully recruited some of the most sought-after security talent in the world to make up the Synack Red Team. Our global network of hackers hail from over 40 countries, and all are highly-vetted and possess well-honed skills in a variety of focus areas.
- We’ve developed and continued to build up our groundbreaking proprietary technology that assists the Synack Red Team in uncovering critical security vulnerabilities. We’ve managed to deliver a signal-to-noise ratio greater than 95 percent and developed a well-functioning triage and operations process.
- We’ve built out a robust technology platform that enables enterprises to engage with our global network of hackers. Our customers have access to LaunchPoint (for testing activity auditability) and a client portal that provides vulnerability management tools, custom reporting, and coverage analytics.
- In just four years, we’ve onboarded some of the largest Fortune 500 companies and various branches and agencies of the U.S. Government. Our customer base has grown into the financial services, banking, healthcare, education, retail, entertainment, technology and manufacturing industries.
- We’ve completed our first project under “Hack the Pentagon” with the Department of Defense, and while the results are confidential, it was an overwhelming success. 2,500 hacker hours were dedicated to exploiting sensitive DoD assets and the first critical vulnerability was found in less than four hours.
- We’ve seen more than a 300 percent increase in year-over-year bookings over the last four quarters in Financial Services, Retail, and Government verticals and our revenue has doubled every quarter for the last 12 quarters.
Achievements and accomplishments aside, we have an exciting vision for the future of this company. Synack is now being backed by investors who have already made winning bets in the enterprise security space.
Where we’re going:
- Continue Innovating: We want to continue accelerating the development of an array of new products that will further revolutionize human-powered security intelligence as we know it.
- Further the Synack Red Team: The human element is crucial to Synack’s business model and as such, we plan to continue recruiting and investing in the most skilled hackers in the world.
- Expand into APAC: Singtel, the leading mobile and telecommunications company in Asia, will help open the door for us into new Asia-Pacific markets where businesses, as in North America and Europe, also face a shortage of talent in security.
- Continue European growth: With GDPR implementation looming and the security talent gap in Europe continues to widen, Synack has experienced organic demand from large enterprises and governments in the region. We hope to continue building up our network of European hackers as well as our customer and partner base.
With that, I hope you will continue keeping tabs on us at Synack; and please read and share some of the press we’ve been receiving around this announcement.
Congratulations to the Synack Team, the Synack Red Team, our customers, our new investors, and all others who have supported us through this journey. I look forward to what’s in store in the years ahead.