State of Tech Startup Showcase Spotlights Part One

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NC TECH announced the slate of startups that will compete as part of the Startup Showcase at the State of Technology Conference on May 10 at the Raleigh Convention Center.  Each startup gets 5 minutes on the ballroom stage to pitch their innovative solution in front of 600+ security, IT and business leaders.  

Conference attendees get to select the winning startup who will receive a prize package that includes cash and in-kind services.  The Startup Showcase is always a favorite component of the conference.

Below are spotlights on three of the participating startups. (The other three will be posted soon.) Learn more about the State of Technology event on May 10 here.

 

 

 

 

Tell us the background on how your startup was founded - what were the challenges you were faced with that prompted the idea to start your business?

JupiterOne was spun out of a cloud healthcare IT company called LifeOmic. LifeOmic knew security was going to be paramount for its clients and took a novel approach to implement security as code.

The result was achieving a very stringent security certification called HITRUST in a short timeframe (5 months) with no corrective actions.

We started socializing our approach with other software companies, in the healthcare space and other markets, and kept hearing the same thing...'how can I buy that? We launched JupiterOne in September of 2018 and have been growing the business since.

What do you love most about doing business in NC?

North Carolina is a very business-friendly state. With a moderate cost of living, great tech talent, and excellent quality of life NC supports recruiting and retaining the best talent for high-growth startups.

Personally, after stints in California and Atlanta, and after nearly 20 years in NC, I wouldn't want to build a business anywhere else. I have always found the community of the area very collaborative and tightly knit. It is a great place to be both professionally and personally.

Can you share some unique or fun facts about your company? What makes your business stand out?

I love our founding story. It is very much the drink-your-own champagne approach. Since we use JupiterOne for the healthcare side of our business, we have a high level of customer empathy which has helped support our growth.

What kind of technology trends have affected your company, and how has your company dealt with those trends?

The increased incidence of breaches (see our interactive infographic) in conjunction with the continued growth of public cloud and SaaS, necessitates a solution like JupiterOne. We feel this will be our key growth enabler.

What do you see for the future of your business?

We are in scaling mode now - investing in sales and marketing while widening the gap between JupiterOne and our competitors.

What are the best ways for people to learn more about/get in touch with your company? 

Tell us the background on how your startup was founded - what were the challenges you were faced with that prompted the idea to start your business?

I spent two decades as an IT guru where cybersecurity was just part of the job. In 2008 I returned to graduate school for a degree in cybersecurity. In a capstone class, I saw an equation for managing cyber risk and something clicked. I realized that equation was the key to figuring out how to guide cybersecurity spending. But the cybersecurity industry wasn't ripe, so I sat on the idea for nearly 10 years.

What do you love most about doing business in NC?

North Carolina is my adopted home state. Upon moving here in my mid-20's, I was pulled aside by a gentleman who said: "Son, North Carolina is a valley of humility between two mountains of conceit." Being from Virginia (one of the mountains) I was deeply offended. About five years later I recalled the conversation and realized he was right and I realized I would remain a dedicated North Carolinian for the rest of my life.

Can you share some unique or fun facts about your company? What makes your business stand out?

Our advocacy work in Washington, DC stands out. Two members of our company make frequent trips there to work on various advisory councils and interact with folks on Capitol Hill. Threat Sketch has advised Congress, Homeland Security, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). For example, the Department of Homeland Security held a round table of the nation's top 25, or so, CEOs in New York City to discuss cybersecurity. Threat Sketch was invited to represent small businesses and nonprofits at the table. We also hold a highly coveted Executive Council seat on the ICT Supply Chain Risk Management Task Force and I will be featured in a short video by the NIST, which was recoded after speaking at their Cyber Risk Management conference.

What kind of technology trends have affected your company, and how has your company dealt with those trends?

The biggest emerging trend in cybersecurity is not technological, but legal. The landscape for data privacy is shifting on its axis. Recognizing this, we hired a data privacy attorney and a fleet of law clerks to build the world's most in-depth, cybersecurity legal database to help companies measure and manage the legal exposure that cybersecurity poses. This is opening up new opportunities in new markets like cyber insurance, commercial lending, and mergers and acquisitions. And we are also participating in the formation of the NIST's Privacy Framework, which will be the gold standard world-wide for managing the legal side of cybersecurity. 

What do you see for the future of your business?

The future for Threat Sketch is clear, blue sky. The frontier for cybersecurity risk management is bounded only by the wave of technology that proceeds it. As the technology industry introduces things like the Internet of Things (IoT) and Blockchain, the risks will keep multiplying. Helping board members, executives, and risk management professionals navigate this shifting landscape is an evergreen opportunity. And advising them on the allocation of $100 billion dollars in worldwide cybersecurity spending is a great place for Threat Sketch.

 

What are the best ways for people to learn more about/get in touch with your company? 

Tell us the background on how your startup was founded - what were the challenges you were faced with that prompted the idea to start your business?

Tracy Futhey, Duke’s Chief Information Officer, funded our research lab at Duke in May 2017 to help automate the time consuming and error prone process of security camera maintenance. We solved this problem using our artificial intelligence background and developed Watchdog which is still in use at Duke.

What do you love most about doing business in NC?

Daniel Reichman is the chief scientist at Deep Visual Insights, DVI, and he is a PhD alum from Duke. Working with Duke alumni, having the support of the university, and being able to pull talent from the several highly ranked research universities in the Triangle helps a lot in staying local in NC.

Can you share some unique or fun facts about your company? What makes your business stand out?

The cost of maintenance is often overlooked when designing a system. In the case of security camera systems it can take more than 1 hour per day to check the system health once per day. The time savings of from an automatic solution not only unburden an operator from the boring job of looking for a faulty image but also provides peace of mind that the cameras are regularly and consistently inspected.

What kind of technology trends have affected your company, and how has your company dealt with those trends?

Recent advances in hardware manufacturing have significantly reduced the cost of security cameras giving rise to system ownership of well over 1000s and even 10,000s security cameras. This is important for security but only insofar as the cameras can be maintained (think of all the outdoor cameras in the recent pollen storm). This increase in camera system size makes the need for an automated maintenance solution more urgent.

What do you see for the future of your business?

Our technology currently focuses on finding specific image anomalies such as a blurred, blocked or tilted image. However, the technology can be thought of as identifying anomalous camera conditions and we are investigating other anomalous conditions that are useful to provide feedback on.

What are the best ways for people to learn more about/get in touch with your company? 

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