Security Experts:

BitSight Raises $40 Million to Grow Security Ratings Business

Security ratings firm BitSight Technologies announced on Thursday that it has closed a $40 million Series C financing funding round, bringing the total raised to date by the company $95 million.

The Cambridge, Mass.-based company offers a platform that generates ratings on companies' security performance. Similar to credit ratings, BitSight explains that its security ratings are generated through the analysis of externally observable data such as compromised machines, vulnerabilities in important communication protocols, and user behavior.

Using sensors placed around the Internet, the ratings are generated entirely from the outside; no special disclosures are required and no intrusive testing is conducted on the rated company.

“BitSight does not perform any vulnerability scanning or any intrusive testing on the company’s network,” Stephen Boyer, co-founder and CTO of BitSight previously told SecurityWeek. “Those are helpful assessments, but they only offer a snapshot in time of the security state of a network. We’re providing a continuous and ongoing way to monitor for vulnerabilities by looking at the externally observable risk areas our customers care about and believe are good measures of security effectiveness.”

Ratings are generated daily by BitSight and range from 250 to 900, where higher ratings equate to lower risk, and according to the company, organizations with a rating of 400 or lower are five times more likely to have a breach than those with a rating of 700 or more.

The new funding will be used to support global expansion and partnerships, make strategic acquisitions, and accelerate product innovation.

The company says it has doubled sales for the first half of 2016 over 2015, and quadrupled its customer count to more than 450 enterprises. A short list of customers includes Lowe's, Ferrari, Hess, Mondelez and The Hartford.

BitSight CEO Shaun McConnon says that with the new funding, the company now has $60 million in the bank and is ready to continue its rapid growth.

"We intend to add an additional 100 people to our current staff over the next 15 months, with a strong focus on engineering and sales,” McConnon said. “We will increase our brand, double our sales, and solidify BitSight as the global standard in security rating services."

The Series C round was led by GGV Capital, with participation from previous investors, including Flybridge Capital Partners, Globespan Capital Partners, Menlo Ventures, and Shaun McConnon, as well as the venture investment arms of telecommunications firms Comcast Ventures, Liberty Global Ventures, and Singtel Innov8. As part of the funding deal, GGV Capital's Glenn Solomon will join the BitSight Board of Directors.

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.