You wouldn’t walk down a street flashing a big wad of cash—that would just be asking for trouble. But if you work on a computer without adequate security, you’re doing the same thing: leaving yourself and your company open to attack. With more than 2,200 daily cyberattacks worldwide—at an average $200K per successful attempt—organizations need to protect their data more than ever before.
Tentacle, a Plano-based infosec startup, wants to help them do that by transforming how organizations assess their security and manage their data, with an “innovative, efficient, reliable” tech platform it launched this week.
Tentacle says its highly configurable data management and security assessment tool can help organizations build and manage the posture of their information security programs. The platform is focused on modernizing, optimizing, and connecting key stakeholders and the details of their respective infosec programs.
“We’re not solving a new problem. And by no means is it a secret that the assessment space has been horribly inefficient,” said Matthew Combs, founder and CEO at Tentacle, in a statement. “The market space we’re entering has been starved of innovation and the benefits of today’s networked technology. What we’re solving is pervasive and growing. We’re not just trying to help thousands of enterprises, rather millions of them.”
At Tentacle.io, organizations will be able to capture, structure, and selectively showcase their information security program details with “far greater efficiency and effectiveness,” the company says.
The bonus is what organizations will be able to leave behind: the normal practices of spreadsheet assessments and redundant information requests. Tentacle enables organizations to manage their own infosec program while also effectively managing shared projects from third-party vendors. Tentacle says its platform is able to accomplish this with “a streamlined, real-time assessment approach.”
Streamlining security assessment for all parties
Companies don’t operate in a bubble. They’re constantly interacting online with customers, clients, vendors, partners, and more. Even though an organization may have robust security itself, connecting with other companies can open them up to vulnerabilities.
That’s why security assessment is a critical mission.
“When two businesses want to partner or work together, most often, they want to make sure that they’re both secure,” Combs told Dallas Innovates. “To do this, one will typically assess another. Assessors can be any organization that works and shares data with third parties or vendors. Vendor security is a critical component to any organization’s information security strategy to ensure that risks are mitigated.”
Tentacle says its tool streamlines the security assessment process for all parties. For assessors, Tentacle enables them to request and receive information from their third parties “with ease.” Assessment requests and responses can be easily centralized and sorted based on question responses, criticality, and security frameworks.
Organizations being assessed can save time by sharing responses to security questions that have already been answered, attach needed documents, and update only when it’s needed. Questions answered for one assessment are saved automatically for future assessments from other partners in the platform.
“Tentacle is a tool that will allow any business to more effectively manage all the information and details related to the work they’re doing to secure their networks, internal operations, and everything else related to information security,” Combs told us.
Boston-area growth equity firm sees the threats
“The daily threats to all of our systems are only growing rapidly—no matter your business,” said Peter Troost, managing director at PSG, a growth equity firm in the greater Boston area, in the statement. “For PSG specifically, our ability to ensure that our 70+ portfolio companies are taking the right steps to keep themselves protected is not only critical for our investments, but also crucial to the ongoing growth and security of each partner we’re invested in.”
Combs clicked through some of the potential threats for us.
“There are numerous cybersecurity threats that come from nefarious actors such as ransomware, phishing, data leakage, hacking, and malware,” Combs said. “It’s imperative for organizations that share data and information with third party partners to ensure that all parties have a sound security posture.”
Tentacle’s edge: efficiency
Combs said one big differentiator in Tentacle’s platform is not having to reinvent the security wheel every time.
“Unlike other solutions, organizations that use Tentacle can end the repetitive work of answering the same security questions over and over again,” he said. “Moreover, by way of our ‘Tentacles,’ we’re offering businesses to connect with one another to share such information in a real-time manner. Being secure at one point of time is nice. Being secure all the time is what keeps a business appropriately protected.”
Security assessors get an efficiency edge too.
“Assessors can easily organize data, information, security responses, and assessments all in a centralized platform,” Combs said. “Unlike other solutions, organizations that stay connected have ongoing visibility into their partners’ security posture and can stay up-to-date on any changes.”
Combs said Tentacle’s platform will work for “any organization that cares about information and data security and is seeking to deploy industry best practices to ensure their operation is always protected.”
He said it’s also appropriate for organizations that need to assess third parties to ensure the security of their overall cyber ecosystem, and ones that are trying to build and manage their information security program and must complete security assessments to win more deals.
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