05
July
2022
|
04:03
Europe/Amsterdam

Cybersecurity startup watchTowr secures US$10.25m in pre-Series A investment

Cybersecurity startup watchTowr secures US$10.25m in pre-Series A investment

  • watchTowr’s next-generation Attack Surface Management (ASM) solution is in high demand from large multinational BFSI enterprises.

05 July 2022 - SINGAPORE - watchTowr, a cybersecurity startup headquartered in Singapore, has secured US$8 million in a pre-series A investment round which was co-led by Prosus Ventures and Vulcan Capital with repeat participation from Wavemaker Partners. watchTower’s total funding now comes to US$10.25 million, factoring in the initial seed round of US$2.25 million that was secured in November 2021 from Vulcan Capital and Wavemaker Partners.

watchTowr will use the additional funds to continue enhancing the technology that underpins its proprietary platform and to seize growth opportunities that are arising from markets outside of Southeast Asia.

Sachin Bhanot, Head of SE Asia Investments, Prosus Ventures, stated that: “We are excited to back Benjamin and his team as they tackle increasingly complex cybersecurity challenges with impressive technical skills, innovation, and agility. This investment enables us to expand our portfolio in the domain of cybersecurity and data privacy. Our entry at an early stage reflects our conviction in the platform.”

This pre-series A round underscores investor confidence in watchTowr. Operational since late 2021, watchTowr has seen high interest for the watchTowr Platform from some of the world’s leading banks, financial services, insurance companies (BFSI), as well as ecommerce and technology brands.

Managing Director & Head of Southeast Asia for Vulcan Capital, Tommy Teo, remarked that, “watchTowr has tremendous potential and in a very short period of time has demonstrated promising traction and aptitude to grow. Our continued support is a strong vote of confidence in Ben and the watchTowr team, and will go towards attracting more talent and extending their reach across the region.”

Empowering enterprises to get ahead of attackers

Benjamin Harris, CEO, watchTowr, said “Our technology gives organisations visibility of how they could be compromised, in real-time. Traditional assurance approaches, like penetration testing, are no longer effective or rapid enough to keep organisations secure. By continuously incorporating the latest attacker tactics and techniques into the watchTowr Platform, CISOs can understand their susceptibility to emerge vulnerabilities and threats in hours, rather than weeks or months.”

Over the last 10 years, organisational attack surfaces have ballooned to include outsourced technology, shadow IT, cloud environments and supply chain risks, to the point where most organisations have simply lost track of their attack surface. Harris says, “When one combines the ballooned attack surface with the ineffective and incomplete security testing approaches that are still utilised today, organisations are not able to protect themselves adequately, especially when we consider the rapid and aggressive speed of change in cyber security. Attackers know this.”

Since November 2021, watchTowr has proven its technology, identifying high-impact and critical weaknesses across organisations at scale - before attackers could exploit them. watchTowr has demonstrated that rapid reaction to emerging vulnerabilities within hours —across vast attack surfaces—is possible, enabling organisations to get ahead of attackers and prevent breaches. When vulnerabilities like the famed Log4Shell go from discovery to Internet-wide attacks within a matter of hours, empowering organisations to defend themselves ahead of this indiscriminate exploitation is incredibly powerful.

To fuel and underpin this capability, watchTowr’s technology builds a real-time view of what an organisation's attack surface looks like to an attacker, typically empowering CISOs with a 300-400% increase in attack surface visibility. “As the old adage goes: ‘you can’t protect what you don’t know about,” Harris concludes.

About watchTowr

watchTowr provides organisations with a continuous, real-time view of their external attack surface - through the eyes of a sophisticated attacker. Pairing world-class technology, underpinned by some of the world’s best offensive cyber security experts, the watchTowr Platform empowers organisations to continuously identify vulnerabilities that would allow an attacker to compromise an organisation. By leveraging data analysis and interrogation within an agile technology framework, watchTowr codifies attacker tactics and techniques that mimic how real attackers break into organisations, continuously.  www.watchtowr.com

About Prosus

Prosus is a global consumer internet group and one of the largest technology investors in the world. Operating and investing globally in markets with long-term growth potential, Prosus builds leading consumer internet companies that empower people and enrich communities. The group is focused on building meaningful businesses in the online classifieds, food delivery, payments and fintech, and education technology sectors. Through the Prosus Ventures team, the Group invests in new technology growth opportunities within logistics, fintech, health, blockchain, social and ecommerce platforms, agriculture and more. The team actively backs exceptional entrepreneurs who are using technology to improve people’s everyday lives. Each month, more than 2 billion customers across the globe use the products and services of companies that Prosus has invested in, acquired or built. To find out more, please visit www.prosus.com.

NOTES TO EDITORS

●      The rapid pace at which surface attacks occur today renders ineffective the traditional, consultant-driven point-in-time exercises. Increased aggression from cyber criminals and attackers, which includes weaponising vulnerabilities to compromise multiple businesses (often simultaneously), means that the former methods of security testing (which took weeks to perform and respond to), have been reduced to a window of 6 hours or less from discovery. In this rapidly changing world, it is imperative that organisations be aware of how they could be compromised, to enable proactive defence.

●      In November 2021, the company secured US$2.25 million in seed funding, led by Vulcan Capital and Wavemaker Partners. Vulcan Capital is a private equity firm founded by Microsoft’s co-founder Paul Allen. The firm invests in category-leading technology, internet, and life sciences companies.

●      Prosus, which led the pre-series A US$8m round through Prosus Ventures, is Tencent's largest shareholder.

●      In June 2022, watchTowr was accepted into the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) SG:D Spark Programme, an initiative aimed to support the growth of promising Singapore-based Innovation Capital Management (ICM) startups by providing them select governmental tools, and access to a collaborative ecosystem and network.

●      Please refer to Benjamin Harris biography. Harris is available for interviews.

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About Prosus:

Prosus is a global consumer internet group and one of the largest technology investors in the world. Operating and investing globally in markets with long-term growth potential, Prosus builds leading consumer internet companies that empower people and enrich communities.

The group is focused on building meaningful businesses in the online classifieds, food delivery, payments and fintech, and education technology sectors in markets including India, Russia, and Brazil. Through its ventures team, Prosus invests in areas including health, logistics, blockchain, and social commerce. Prosus actively seeks new opportunities to partner with exceptional entrepreneurs who are using technology to improve people’s everyday lives.

Every day, billions of customers use the products and services of companies that Prosus has invested in, acquired or built, including 99minutos,  Airmeet, Aruna, AutoTrader, Autovit.ro, Azos, BandLab, Bibit, Biome Makers, Borneo, Brainly, BUX, BYJU'S, Bykea, Captain Fresh, Codecademy, Collective Benefits, Creditas, DappRadar, DeHaat, Detect Technologies, Domofond.ru, dott, EduMe, ElasticRun, eMAG, Endowus, Eruditus, EVERY, Facily, Flink, Foodics, Good Glamm Group, GoodHabitz, GoStudent, Honor, iFood, Imovirtual, Klar, Kovi, LazyPay, letgo, Luno, Mensa Brands, Meesho, merXu, Movile, Oda, OLX, Otodom, OTOMOTO, PaySense, PayU, Pharmeasy, Platzi, Property24, Quick Ride, Red Dot Payment, Republic, Sharebite, Shipper, ShopUp, SoloLearn, Stack Overflow, Standvirtual, Superside, Swiggy, Thndr, Tonik, Ula, Urban Company, Vegrow, watchTowr, Wayflyer, and Wolt.

Hundreds of millions of people have made the platforms of Prosus’s associates a part of their daily lives. For listed companies where we have an interest, please see: Tencent, Delivery Hero, Remitly, Trip.com, Udemy, Skillsoft, Sinch, and SimilarWeb.

Today, Prosus companies and associates help improve the lives of more than two billion people around the world.

Prosus has a primary listing on Euronext Amsterdam (AEX:PRX) and secondary listings on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (XJSE:PRX) and a2X Markets (PRX.AJ). Prosus is majority-owned by Naspers.

For more information, please visit www.prosus.com.

About Prosus

Prosus is a global consumer internet group and one of the largest technology investors in the world. Operating and investing globally in markets with long-term growth potential, Prosus builds leading consumer internet companies that empower people and enrich communities.

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