Recently founded by cyber security pioneer Barrett Lyon (co-founder BitGravity), startup company Defense.net gets $9.5 million in funding from Bessemer Venture Partners. The company is designed to mitigate the increasing scale and sophistication of modern Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. To lead Defense.net, Lyon has brought on Chris Risley (CEO) and other industry veterans.
Founded in December 2012, Defense.net hasn’t launched any products yet. The company states that the soon-to-be-announced products are architected to defend businesses and organizations supporting critical enterprise-scale infrastructures against the ever increasing scale and sophistication of modern DDoS attacks while maintaining the highest levels of application performance.
Anti DDoS Solution
“A decade ago, small scale DDoS attacks by today’s standards shut down off-shore cyber casinos for extortion purposes, but now political hacktivists and foreign government backed ‘cyber fighters’ such as Izz ad-Din al-Qassam are attacking critical infrastructure of the U.S., including financial institutions, utilities, telcos, Internet hosting facilities, and state government,” said Barrett Lyon. “Although much of this critical infrastructure uses traditional DDoS mitigation solutions, every week brings reports of sites, applications, and services brought down by attacks that are now significantly more sophisticated and 16X larger than just one year ago; clearly the techniques we developed in 2003 don’t work for global banks today.”
“Even when they successfully stop an attack, existing mitigation solutions create significant side effects from blocked users and fraud alerts to slow page loads, broken links, and stalled or timed out video streams,” said Lyon. “Some companies have had to ignore their fraud alerts when DDoS mitigation was turned on because so many of the alerts were artifacts of the mitigation. It’s analogous to the fire department responding to a fire – they can extinguish the fire, but in the process they get water all over the place and do some damage on their own.”
After hearing from banks and other organizations about the crippling side effects from legacy DDoS attack mitigation, Lyon realized how his Silicon Valley expertise in new applications could help him develop a better DDoS mitigation solution that maintains the quality of new applications. The Defense.net solution will both protect against modern DDoS attacks and preserve the performance of applications and the end-user experience. Lyon claims to have created the most advanced technologies to combat today’s large scale attacks as well as more sophisticated attacks in the coming years.
Barrett Lyon himself will serve the company as Chief Technology Officer (CTO). To lead Defense.net, he has brought on:
Chris Risley, Chief Executive Officer (CEO): an eight time venture-backed CEO who for the past 20 years has focused on highly-scalable Secure Data Management (SDM) software companies.
Joe Daly, VP of Network Operations: a founding employee of Prolexic Technologies who built and ran their DDoS mitigation network infrastructure.
Dan Murphy, Director of Systems Architecture: a six year veteran of Prolexic Technologies who created and managed the DDoS mitigation infrastructure which thwarted complicated application layer attacks.
Defense.net is the 30th cyber security investment of venture capital firm Bessemer Venture Partners. Seventeen of Bessemer’s prior security startups have gone public or been acquired. David Cowan, a partner of Bessemer and the co-founder of VeriSign, joined the Defense.net board at its conception, along with internet visionary Jay Adelson who has pioneered such companies as Equinix, Digg, Revision3, SimpleGeo and Opsmatic.