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Claroty Emerges from Stealth Promising 'Extreme Visibility' into Industrial Networks

Claroty Makes Public Debut With $32 Million in Funding to Protect Critical Infrastructure

Israeli cybersecurity startup Claroty has exited stealth mode to announce a security platform designed to provide “extreme visibility” into Operational Technology (OT) environments and protect critical infrastructure from cyber threats.

In addition to making its public debut, the company disclosed that it has managed to quietly raise $32 million in funding through Series A and a Series B rounds.

Launched by Israel’s Team8 startup foundry, the company has offices in Tel Aviv, Israel and New York City, and currently has roughly 45 employees.

Claroty LogoWhile operating in stealth mode for more than two years since being founded in July 2014, Claroty has built a platform that provides broad support for control system manufacturers and employs “high-fidelity models and advanced algorithms” to monitor industrial control systems (ICS) communications and provide security and process integrity alerts.

The company explains that while many legacy security companies claim they can apply traditional Information Technology (IT) security to OT systems, the reality is that everything about OT – from protocols to staff – is different and requires technology specifically designed for use in OT environments.

Claroty says that its platform was designed from the ground to provide the ability to safely monitor ICS, SCADA and other critical OT networks, uncover previously hidden issues and alert cybersecurity teams and system operators to malicious attacks and process integrity issues.

“No corner of the ICS network is dark to us and no event remains misunderstood,” the company says, referring to its fluency in industrial networking protocols used in ICS, SCADA and other OT systems. “In every protocol, we’re OT native speakers.”

While Claroty has just emerged from stealth, its platform has already been deployed in several production environments. While many companies emerge from stealth with a product only seen by a few beta customers, Claroty has a number of paying customers already on board, including multiple seven figure deals, Amir Zilberstein, Claroty CEO and Co-Founder, told SecurityWeek.

Customers already using the Claroty platform include a Fortune 100 manufacturing company, a large oil exploration company, marine vessels out at sea, and several others, Patrick McBride, Chief Marketing Officer at Claroty, told SecurityWeek.

While “cyberwar” and nation-state attacks grab headlines, there are many other threats to OT infrastructures that tend to be overlooked and can be just as damaging, Claroty says. Such threats include sabotage, IP theft/espionage, and unintentional human errors—all which can impact systems and the production processes.

According to a recent report from FireEye, more than 1,500 vulnerabilities specific to industrial control systems have been disclosed in the past 15 years, with many not having vendor patches when their existence was made public. A report published in July by Kaspersky Lab showed that a total of more than 220,000 ICS components had been reachable from the Internet, with nearly one-third of them located in the United States. 

Claroty cites this increasing risk as the driving factor for the need for deeper insight and specialized products built specifically for OT environments.

“Applying traditional cybersecurity tools to OT systems is a recipe for failure,” said Galina Antova, co-founder and Chief Business Development Officer at Claroty. “Having spent years securing OT environments, it is critical that the solution truly speaks the unique language of OT. While CISOs have been handed the responsibility to monitor and protect industrial systems, their teams lack real-time visibility into these operational networks.”

“Claroty is not just making a security tool that provides extreme visibility into OT networks and protocols, it’s also creating a platform on which IT and OT teams can work toward shared cybersecurity and process integrity goals,” Antova, who previously served as the Global Head of Industrial Security Services at Siemens, added.

With what it calls “extreme visibility”, Claroty says its platform can “create high-fidelity models and employ advanced behavioral algorithms to detect potential attacks and noteworthy changes that can adversely impact operations–including a variety of security attacks and environmental changes that could harm system integrity or damage industrial processes.”

Through a passive, real-time monitoring approach, Claroty monitors all communication within an industrial control network to identify high-risk changes and potentially malicious activity that could pose an operational safety, security or process integrity risk. 

Claroty inspects a large number of industrial control protocols; with support for both open and proprietary protocols from vendors including Siemens, Rockwell Automation/Allen Bradley, Yokogawa, Emerson, GE, Schneider Electric, Mitsubishi, Honeywell, ABB and more.

Additionally, the Claroty platform integrates technologies including SIEM, Log Management, Security Analytics, Access Control, Analytic Platforms, LDAP, Ticketing Systems, SOC and Fusion Center tools.

The company’s financial backers include Bessemer Venture Partners, Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors, Marker LLC, Quantum Strategic Partners, ICV, Red Dot Capital Partners, and Mitsui & CO., Ltd.

David Cowan, partner at Bessemer Venture Partners, shared an interesting internal memo on the need for industrial cybersecurity and why he believed Claroty was a worthy investment.

Claroty is one of several companies who have recently announced funding. Late last month, Dragos broke news that it had raised $1.2 million from startup studio DataTribe, while in early August CyberX announced that it had raised $9 million in new funding to help expand its business and solutions designed to protect the Industrial IoT. In July, Indegy announced that it had raised $12 million in Series A round of financing led by Vertex Ventures Israel. 

The ICS security market size is estimated to top $12.6 Billion by 2021, according to recent research published by MarketsandMarkets.

Related: Learn More at SecurityWeek’s 2016 ICS Cyber Security Conference

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the treat 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.