by Carly Page
Elisity, a self-styled innovator that provides behavior-based enterprise cybersecurity, has raised $26 million in Series A funding.
The funding round was co-led by Two Bear Capital and AllegisCyber Capital, the latter of which has invested in a number of cybersecurity startups, including Panaseer, with previous seed investor Atlantic Bridge also participating.
Elisity, which is led by industry veterans from Cisco, Qualys and Viptela, says the funding will help it meet growing enterprise demand for its cloud-delivered Cognitive Trust platform, which it claims is the only platform intelligent enough to understand how assets and people connect beyond corporate perimeters.
The platform looks to help organizations transition from legacy access approaches to zero trust, a security model based on maintaining strict access controls and not trusting anyone — even employees — by default, across their entire digital footprint. This enables organizations to adopt a “work-from-anywhere” model, according to the company, which notes that most companies today continue to rely on security and policies based on physical location or low-level networking constructs, such as VLAN, IP and MAC addresses, and VPNs.
Cognitive Trust, the company claims, can analyze the unique identity and context of people, apps and devices, including Internet of Things (IoT) and operational technology (OT), wherever they’re working. The company says through its AI-driven behavioral intelligence, the platform can also continuously assess risk and instantly optimize access, connectivity and protection policies.
“CISOs are facing ever-increasing attack surfaces caused by the shift to remote work, reliance on cloud-based services (and often multi-cloud) and the convergence of IT/OT networks,” said Mike Goguen, founder and managing partner at Two Bear Capital. “Elisity addresses all of these problems by not only enacting a zero trust model, but by doing so at the edge and within the behavioral context of each interaction. We are excited to partner with the CEO, James Winebrenner, and his team as they expand the reach of their revolutionary approach to enterprise security.”
Founded in 2018, Elisity — whose competitors include the likes of Vectra AI and Lastline — closed a $7.5 million seed round in August that same year, led by Atlantic Bridge. With its seed round, Elisity began scaling its engineering, sales and marketing teams to ramp up ahead of the platform’s launch.
Now it’s looking to scale in order to meet growing enterprise demand, which comes as many organizations move to a hybrid working model and seek the tools to help them secure distributed workforces.
“When the security perimeter is no longer the network, we see an incredible opportunity to evolve the way enterprises connect and protect their people and their assets, moving away from strict network constructs to identity and context as the basis for secure access,” said Winebrenner.
“With Elisity, customers can dispense with the complexity, cost and protracted timeline enterprises usually encounter. We can onboard a new customer in as little as 45 minutes, rather than months or years, moving them to an identity-based access policy, and expanding to their cloud and on-prem[ise] footprints over time without having to rip and replace existing identity providers and network infrastructure investments. We do this without making tradeoffs between productivity for employees and the network security posture.”
Elisity, which is based in California, currently employs around 30 staff. However, it currently has no women in its leadership team, nor on its board of directors.