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Dell Technologies Capital Invests In Five Cybersecurity Startups

Dell Technologies Capital (DTC), the venture investment arm of Dell Technologies, has invested in at least five cybersecurity startups this year. The efforts are part of an expansive venture capital strategy involving 27 DTC investments in the first six months of 2017.

Some of this year's notable DTC security investments include:

1. Jask is a San Francisco-based company that offers artificial intelligence (AI) for security operations centers (SOCs). The company came out of stealth in June. At that time, Jask announced it raised $12 million in Series A financing from DTC and other investors. With the funding, Jask said it planned to release a product that helps SOCs monitor threats in real-time, GeekWire reported. Also, Jask last month added Stuart McClure, CEO of AI-based threat prevention solutions company Cylance, to its board of directors. McClure is expected to help Jask "scale security analysts' abilities to predict network threats," he told Forbes.

2. RedLock monitors Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services (AWS) for cloud security and compliance risks. The company in May announced it raised $8.5 million in a Series A funding round that featured participation from DTC and other investors, TechCrunch indicated. Furthermore, RedLock in August launched its CloudView Channel Program, which enables channel and technology partners to offer its cloud security solution to customers.

3. RiskLens provides Cyber Risk Quantification, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) application to help organizations quantify their financial risk exposure to cybersecurity, IT and other operational events. In May, RiskLens secured $5 million in Series A equity funding from DTC and other investors, according to a prepared statement. RiskLens planned to use the funding to accelerate its go-to-market efforts, grow its customer base and forge new partnerships, CEO Nick Sanna said.

4. RiskRecon provides a SaaS-based cyber risk assessment platform that delivers security measurements, analytics and analyst-level insights. DTC in June was one of several investors to back RiskRecon as part of a $12 million Series A funding round. With the funding, RiskRecon intended to enhance its product development and accelerate its global sales growth, the company said in a prepared statement.

5. ZingBox offers Internet of Things (IoT) security products, and the company's IoT Guardian solution provides organizations with visibility into the nature and actions of their connected devices. The company in August closed a $22 million Series B funding round that included participation from DTC and other investors. With the funding, ZingBox is better equipped than ever before to meet the demand for IoT Guardian and help organizations address a variety of IoT security challenges, the company stated.

Dell Extends Beyond PCs, Data Centers

Scott Darling

As the aforementioned investments show, DTC is looking beyond traditional data center and desktop hardware investments as it searches for ways to expand its global reach.

Meanwhile, DTC appears likely to continue to invest in security and other state-of-the-art technologies in the foreseeable future, according to President Scott Darling.

"As the adoption of new technologies like IoT, AI and become more prevalent, we plan to continue scaling our capital investments and resources accordingly," Darling said.

Still, Dell Technologies' track record in the IT security market is mixed. The company owned both SonicWall (firewalls) and Quest Software (IT management software) for several years before selling off those assets in 2016. Dell has also spun off SecureWorks, which sits atop our Top 100 MSSPs list for 2017.

Additional insights from Joe Panettieri.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.