Hyderabad: Traditionally, organisations have relied on preventive and reactive measures to defend against cyber-attacks, and have failed consistently. As prevention continues to remain unsuccessful, attackers are able to exploit vulnerabilities on many devices. Realising that it was time for a new school of thought, a certified ethical hacker and forensic analyst, Kiran Vangaveti, took the task of building a new age cyber defence tool ground up by establishing his company BluSapphire in Hyderabad.
Vangaveti founded BluSapphire in 2014 with three people to bring in innovation that was lacking in the cyber security space to meet the demands of enterprises and vendors with a reliable platform to tackle advanced level threats. He comes with over 22 years of experience in the IT industry primarily in the fintech space, of which 17 years have been in cyber security. He has worked in senior cyber security executive roles in large enterprises such as GE Capital and Praxair before joining Tudor Investment Corp as chief information security officer (CISO). He led successful cyber security, compliance and risk management programmes across enterprises and believes artificial intelligence and machine learning are in the golden age.
Recalling the journey, BluSapphire founder and CEO, told Telangana Today, “I decided to bootstrap the company so that I develop the tool without the influence of any investor and there is no external interest. Having worked in the fintech sector, we started focusing on banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI).
Then we also saw interest from pharma and healthcare. Pharmaceutical companies spend almost 20 years to develop a successful drug and protection of data and intellectual property is prime to them. They also need to meet the validation requirements and be cyber ready. Healthcare companies are keen to secure patient data.”
Vangaveti is the brain behind BluSapphire, a security product that aims to be the intelligence behind current cyber security infrastructure, allowing automated decision making capabilities and advanced malware analysis capabilities to regular security teams. His expertise in enterprise security management, compliance, network, endpoint and data security, network security auditing, computer and network forensics, vulnerability management, security architecture and risk management is helping his team to build a dependable tool for users.
As a step forward, his company in May this year opened an Advanced Threat Research Centre (ATRC) and security operations centre in Hyderabad. It has also launched three new variants of its flagship multi-vector based malware and zero-day attack defence tool BluSapphire. The security software uses a combination of machine learning, artificial intelligence and data analytics to detect, proactively respond and remediate threats in milliseconds.
The facility actively tests latest malware techniques used by attackers and develops defence techniques by using future technologies. His team has spent the last four years in researching complex malware behaviour.
“Hyderabad is a terrific place in terms of livability. We are able to attract cyber security professionals from across the country. Hyderabad’s lowest crime rate among the tier-2 cities made it a right bet for us to start the facility here,” he explained.
Vangaveti said, “With the opening of our new facility, we are firmly placed to consolidate our technological capabilities and building more vertical-based research teams that will augment our product development with industry-specific solutions for defence, finance, pharmaceuticals and healthcare. There are opportunities coming from government sector too.”
BluSapphire which has a 50-people team now has created referenceable clientele globally. From past three years, it has witnessed 60 per cent year-on-year growth, and for FY18-19, it is targeting 300 per cent growth in its revenues. The company is currently bootstrapped by Vangaveti and is profitable. It is also entering into strategic alliances to expand its operations into major markets like the US, EU and Middle East in the near future, besides strengthening its domestic clientele.
“We want to create a 400 people-team within next two years. We will source talent from all major IT hubs of the country. We are going to start our own satellite offices in Europe and Middle East. We currently have offices in New York, Connecticut in the eastern side of the US. We want be in North America and Canada. There is a lot of acceptance for Indian cyber security solutions in the Middle East. We want to leverage it and are building partnerships here,” he informed.
Currently 80 per cent of the company’s revenues are coming from the US and the remaining from other markets including India. India and Asian countries in future could contribute about 40 per cent, he hinted.
On the defining moments, he shares, “Feedback from our customers (who were struggling with cyber security situations) that we could resolve their problems and testimonials of global consulting companies on our innovative capabilities gave our team the much-needed boost and confidence in our journey. For instance, a large multinational law firm was struggling with a crypto-mining issue.
Traditional cyber security companies could not detect the issue. The law firm approached us and within 12 hours we not only detected the source, but could take full control over the situation. This fetched us a half-a-million dollar deal, spread over next two years. Such deals boost our confidence and help retain talent. We are now building a new product which will be ready by next year. Trials will begin soon.”
Vangaveti said unlike other large cyber security companies that focus on serving global top 100, BluSapphire focuses on serving evolving and medium size enterprises, which will be a major differentiator. “The company is also closely working with technology universities to create cyber warriors for tomorrow,” he signs off.