Growing Societal Need for AI Security Propels HiddenLayer to 2023 RSAC Innovation Sandbox Pitch-Off Win

Posted on by RSAC Editorial Team

The highly-anticipated Innovation Sandbox contest highlighted RSA Conference's opening day, drawing a packed audience. AI application security company, HiddenLayer, clinched the victory among a highly competitive field of 10 emerging companies (profiled below) vying for the title of “Most Innovative Startup."

The event moderator and RSAC Program Committee Chair, Dr. Hugh Thompson, declared this year’s contestants created the most competitive pool the judges had ever seen in “the most important showcase of innovation in cybersecurity.” He then turned the mic over to 2022 Innovation Sandbox winner, CEO & co-founder of Talon Cyber Security, Ofer Ben-Noon to discuss the company’s rapid growth in the past 10 months. This included raising a $100M Series A round and extending exclusive partnerships with Microsoft and Crowdstrike.

The esteemed judges this year again included veteran panelists Niloofar Razi Howe (Senior Operating Partner at Energy Impact Partners), Paul Kocher (independent researcher), Shlomo Kramer (CEO & Co-founder at Cato Networks) and Christopher Young (Executive Vice President of Business Development, Strategy and Ventures at Microsoft), with new addition, Barmak Meftah (Co-founder & Partner at Ballistic Ventures).

The top two finalists were HiddenLayer and Pangea, both addressing massive issues for the cybersecurity sector while providing value for the enterprise. But ultimately the panel decided HiddenLayer is “holistically working on THE problem we’re going to face in the next few years,” said Young.

Guardians of Web3 Digital Assets
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Victor Fang
Overview: Web3 is on the precipice of becoming a trillion dollar industry with a $4B security problem. Because the attack surface of Web3 is so complex, mean time to detection (MTTD) and remediation (MTTR) can be months longer than the industry average. The first Web3 security company on the RSAC stage, AnChain.AI is making the blockchain safe and compliant, reducing remediation time to seconds.

Astrix Security
Securing a world where machines are outnumbering humans
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Alon Jackson
Overview: Employees are constantly adopting new tools to work more efficiently, often providing access to non-human app connections that can expose the business. Currently nothing exists to secure the growing number of non-human connections, so Astrix has created the first VPN for apps, keys and tokens.

Cloud security remediation, right from the start
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Merav Bahat
Overview: In an effort to maintain cloud security, a plethora of detection tools have been created, but actually remediating those threats is rife with confusion and creates tension between the security and dev teams. Dazz’s automated remediation technology provides developers with the context necessary to fix the issue and better collaborate with their security counterparts.

Endor Labs
Empowering developers and security teams to use open source without drowning in security noise
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Varun Badhwar
Overview: Every time a developer downloads a new open source package, they could be pulling in dozens of additional tools, each with its distinct security risks (even if not being actively used). Founded only 18 months ago, Endor Labs is intervening in the developer workflow to help them select more secure open source libraries while also reducing alert fatigue.

Helping enterprises safeguard the machine learning models
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Chris Sestito
Overview: It will come as no surprise that AI is the fastest growing tech sector, which also makes it the most vulnerable. According to the HiddenLayer CEO, protecting AI will be a bigger societal need than securing operating systems, so the team has created a code-, cloud-, and use-case-agnostic machine learning security platform. This will enable data scientists to drive innovation rather than focus on security concerns.

Turning the fragmented world of security into a simple set of APIs
Presenter: CEO & Founder Oliver Friedrichs
Overview: By 2024 there will be 29 million developers, but most have little interest in cybersecurity. In order to design more secure apps, Pangea has created a pay-as-you-go, developer-first Security Platform-as-a-Service (SPaaS) to remove the complexity of building and managing security features, so developers can leverage their specific skill sets.

Relyance AI
Privacy: It's all in the code
Presenter: Co-CEO & Co-founder Abhi Sharma
Overview: Privacy is the most foundational issue of our lifetime, while simultaneously consumer trust is at an all time low. Companies need to start with the source of truth - the code. Relyance is the only company that leverages a comprehensive view of the runtime, data address and code base in a single platform to maintain data privacy.

Enabling companies to build trust through transparency
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Al Yang
Overview: Companies are not only reliant on their own security postures, but also those of their vendors and their vendors’ vendors. SafeBase empowers infosec teams with a customer-facing “Trust Center,” that incorporates security certifications and real-time objective performance data to disrupt how businesses communicate trust through the entire B2B software supply chain.

Valence Security
Removing the mess from your SaaS mesh
Presenter: CEO & Co-founder Yoni Shohet
Overview: SaaS applications have evolved to become decentralized, complex platforms into which security teams have little visibility. Valence functions beyond security oversight to remediate SaaS risks, identifying non-human and inactive third party tokens and empowering and incorporating business users, to save time for security teams.

Solving the confidentially problems of blockchain and AI with homomorphic encryption
Presenter: CTO & Co-founder Pascal Paillier
Overview: Zama has built the first framework for developers to use homomorphic encryption, and the best use case for this end-to-end encryption today is in blockchain. Currently there is no privacy on blockchains and homomorphic encryption technology can be leveraged without the hardware acceleration necessary for mass adoption.

Congratulations to the 2023 finalists and winner!

RSAC Editorial Team

Editorial, RSA Conference

RSAC Insights

innovation Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning cloud security Open Source Encryption blockchain & distributed ledger privacy

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