Data Loss Prevention (DLP) , Endpoint Security , Governance & Risk Management

Cyberhaven Secures $88M to Strengthen Data Security Platform

Adams Street Partners, Khosla Ventures Lead Series C Funding for Data Security Firm
Cyberhaven Secures $88M to Strengthen Data Security Platform
Howard Ting, CEO, Cyberhaven (Image: Cyberhaven)

A data security vendor led by a former Nutanix and Palo Alto Networks executive raised $88 million to develop new products and enhance AI-based detection.

See Also: Getting Started with Data Loss Prevention and Insider Threat Management

The Series C funding will help San Jose, California-based Cyberhaven become a leader in the fragmented data security market by protecting data in generative AI applications and databases, according to CEO Howard Ting. The latest round comes 30 months after Cyberhaven received $33 million of Series B funding and was led by Adams Street and Khosla Ventures, which Ting praised for cyber experience and connections.

"We think we're creating a huge category, and we're one of the best companies positioned to be a winner in this category, so we want to go capture that opportunity," Ting told Information Security Media Group. "We want to make all the right investments in building out our product organization and continue to invest in scaling the go-to-market. That takes a certain amount of capital."

What Cyberhaven Plans to Do With the Money

Cyberhaven aims to enhance its detection capabilities using AI and cover additional types of data as data protection evolves into a platform play, similar to other aspects of cyber, according to Ting. Specifically, Ting said, the company is investing heavily in an AI-based large language model that employs data to predict user actions and triggers alerts for anomalous activities (see: How the World's Largest Law Firm Reimagined Data Protection)

"Data security is going to become a platformization play, just like so many other aspects of cybersecurity," Ting said. "We intend to build out more products, capture more wallet share and extend our platform."

The company can already provide warnings or block actions based on data movement patterns, and Ting said Cyberhaven plans to expand its coverage to include data in databases, data moving through gen AI apps, and additional gen AI tools and applications, Ting said. Cyberhaven wants to offer visibility across the data life cycle from data scientists' imports to customer service interactions, according to Ting.

In addition to fortifying its detection muscle, Ting said Cyberhaven plans to invest in product categories adjacent to its foundation in data detection and response, such as data security posture management and privacy and compliance. Cyberhaven will also integrate with other cybersecurity providers in areas such as secure browser, EDR and collaboration to enhance visibility and control over data movement, Ting said.

"We want to continue to build integrations into other aspects of the security stack so that our unique visibility into data movement can be used to detect and uncover other kinds of risks to the organization," Ting said.

What Success Looks Like to Cyberhaven

Cyberhaven competes against data loss prevention vendors including Broadcom, Trellix, Digital Guardian and Forcepoint; infrastructure security companies such as Palo Alto Networks and Zscaler; and newer startups in the data security space. The typical Cyberhaven customer is based in the United States, has thousands or tens of thousands of seats, and wants to innovate in a field such as manufacturing or healthcare.

Key metrics tracked by Cyberhaven include annual recurring revenue, cash burn and client retention, with a focus on balancing aggressive growth with efficient spending, though Ting said profitability is at least 12 months out. Ting believes organizations should shift from infrastructure-centric to data-centric security models since data is a business's most important asset but is currently underprotected.

"Our investors want us to continue to grow aggressively but also do it with some sobriety, to not have crazy amounts of spend to get that growth," Ting said.

The recent funding round brought Cyberhaven's valuation up to $488 million, and Ting said the company wants to increase its business outside the United States from 20% to 30% of total revenue within a year.

"If you look at data security, the amount of investment there is underserved given how important data is," Ting said. "Data is the only asset that every organization owns that has terminal value."

About the Author

Michael Novinson

Michael Novinson

Managing Editor, Business, ISMG

Novinson is responsible for covering the vendor and technology landscape. Prior to joining ISMG, he spent four and a half years covering all the major cybersecurity vendors at CRN, with a focus on their programs and offerings for IT service providers. He was recognized for his breaking news coverage of the August 2019 coordinated ransomware attack against local governments in Texas as well as for his continued reporting around the SolarWinds hack in late 2020 and early 2021.

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