With an estimated 65% of big global companies looking to implement Bring Your Own Device policies by the end of this year, the BYOD market – which turns your chosen smartphone into a fire-walled enterprise device – is shaping up to be a big market. That spells enormous problems for the likes of RIM’s Blackberry, but enormous opportunity for startups that can come up with secure and smart ways for companies to implement this. To this end VCs are taking a healthy interest in the space, and the latest evidence of this is the move by Israeli VC Pitango to lead a $3 million seed investment round in Skycure, it’s first funding. We understand this is Pitango’s first investment from Pitango 6, its recently launched new fund which invests across the board, from pre-seed to growth-stage. Rona Segev-Gal, General Partner at Pitango, will join Skycure’s board.
Founded in May 2012 by Yair Amit and Adi Sharabani, Skycure claims to have a clever new approach to BYOD, creating a “mobile firewall” that watches for security threats but does’t impair the phones usage, privacy or battery life. Skycure does this by having a client-side firewall on the device paired with a server-side service that does most of the heavy lifting. The company claims it can protect against data leakage, malicious malware, wireless network attacks, and exploitation of vulnerable apps, according to Adi Sharabani, Skycure’s CEO.
Segev-Gal says “networks are no longer confined to physical locations, resulting in unique security challenges that are not solved by current solutions.”
Skycure hit the news earlier this year after revealing a major privacy violation by LinkedIn’s mobile apps, which leaked out sensitive information from personal and enterprise calendars.
Apple has addressed this problem in its own way, improving its mobile applications privacy model from misbehaving applications, but is still not considered invulnerable at an organisational level.