Ghost Security, which its founders describe as an “app security” startup, came out of stealth today with $15 million in funding from 468 Capital, DNX Ventures and Munich Re Ventures at a $50 million valuation. CEO Greg Martin said the capital will be used to expand the team, build the Ghost product and launch pilots with customers.
Apps and APIs are at the heart of organizations. Finally, they provide important information to employees and customers. But more and more, apps and APIs have become vulnerable. Salt Security — which sells an API protection product to be fair — estimates that “malicious” API usage grew by 681 percent from December 2020 to December 2021. As for apps, they are widely used by cybercriminals targeting mobile devices. Pradeo Labs Research.
Martin says Ghost takes a “data science” approach to security to solve challenges that other vendors can’t. While keeping the details largely and largely under wraps — the Ghost product hasn’t launched yet — he says the company’s technology provides visibility and risk protection for applications and their services and APIs, including cloud and on-premise environments. .
“As an industry, we’re still seeing a lot of legacy in how to deal with the proliferation of applications, data and microservices that has created massive cloud adoption,” Martin said in a press release. We are fully considering the approach to protect.
Fighting words for a pre-production company. But Ghost’s co-founders have significant expertise in cybersecurity, Martin points out. Josh Larson, CTO, was an engineering manager at Symantec before joining the Blackfin Security Group as an account manager and co-founder of Check Point, which Symantec acquired in 2015. Eric Cornelius was Chief Product Officer, Deputy Director of the US Department of the Interior. Security Control Systems Security Program and Chief Product Architect at Blackberry.
Talent is only part of the equation—and Spirit faces plenty of competition outside the door. The aforementioned Salt Security has raised tens of millions of dollars for its technology to protect APIs from malicious abuse. No Name, another company that aims to solve API security problems, received a $1 billion valuation last December after a $135 million Series C round. Searchable AI, 42Crunch and Cequence offer comprehensive API security services, and on the application security side there are vendors such as Asterix Security and Inso Security.
That doesn’t help DNX Ventures managing partner and Ghost investor Hiro Rio Mada. The amount of venture capital investment in cybersecurity startups fell 35.8% this quarter, according to Pitchbook data, making it a meaningful investment.
“The adoption of applications, APIs and microservices represents a huge growth potential for businesses, but also introduces many new areas of attack,” Meda said in a statement. “A better approach is needed to protect these assets, and Ghost is well positioned to address that challenge.”