Mobilisafe, the stealthy Seattle-based mobile security startup with $1.2 million in funding from Madrona Venture Group and Trilogy Equity Partnership, is opening up access to its private beta program today (invite link below) for a handful of TechCrunch readers.
In addition, the company is revealing new insights it gained during its private beta period related to the penetration of mobile devices in the SMB market – the area which happens to be the startup's current area of focus.
Much of the current analysis on the consumerization of I.T. and the accompanying BYOD (“bring your own device”) trends are focused on the enterprise market, but Mobilisafe's data comes from its own hands-on experience with SMB's.
Founded by by former T-Mobile software architects Giri Sreenivas and Dirk Sigurdson, Mobilisafe is focused on building a security solution that helps companies deal with the influx of personal devices on the corporate network. But the startup doesn't just provide businesses with tools to manage the increased number of mobile devices, it's also performing data-mining on the aggregate data it collects, enabling its solution to learn over time, and become more predictive about its analysis and recommendations.
Mobilisafe's big advantage is that it will be able to use the aggregate data to analyze whether an organization is more or less secure than its peers in the same industry or vertical. Right now, the focus is on providing this analysis and understanding to smaller businesses (between 15-2,500 employees), especially because they're more at risk due to lower I.T. budgets and/or lack of in-house I.T. expertise. But such an ability could easily be useful in larger organizations in the future, if Mobilisafe wanted to go that route.
Over the past three months, Mobilisafe mapped out more than 38 million employee device connections (now up to 44M), which allowed it to uncover some interesting trends within the SMB market.
For example, the majority of SMB's are highly mobilized, and are driven by BYOD programs, with over 80% of SMB employees already using smartphones and tablets. A new device model was introduced to a company for every 6.6 employees, but over half (56%) were running out-of-date firmware. SMB I.T. departments, meanwhile, are often at a loss when it comes to determining this sort of information for themselves.
In addition, around 39% of authenticated devices were inactive for over 30 days, something that could indicate devices which were lost, stolen, replaced or sold. In some cases, these devices may have had employee credentials and sensitive corporate data on them before disappearing off the network.
The data gathered here through Mobilisafe's initial beta run is more of a confirmation of the market value for its mobile security solution, meant to simplify the challenges involved with assessing security risk and then knowing the next steps to take after being presented with specific issues.
Mobilisafe has been quietly running a private beta since late last year. Companies use its SaaS solution to tell Mobilisafe what kind of risk threshold they have, and then the startup does the heavy lifting to determine whether they're falling above or below that threshold. The whole thing can be deployed in 15 minutes, without hardware or network changes, on-device software, or changes to employee behavior, the startup says.
In conjunction with the release of this new SMB data, Mobilisafe is also opening up access to its private beta to 50 TechCrunch readers who head to mobilisafe.com/signup and enter in the code TECHCRUNCH.