Network Security

App visibility startup Bionic comes out of stealth with $17 million in funding

Emerging from stealth today, a startup founded by two former members of the Israeli Defense Force's cybersecurity division raised $17 million in funding from investors.

Among those investing in Bionic: Dharmesh Thakker and René Bonvanie of Battery Ventures, Gil Raanan of Cyberstarts, former Symantec president Michael Fey, former Goldman Sachs chief technology officer Don Duet, former Barclays chief information officer Sameer Jain and Passave founder Ariel Maislos.

Bionic’s main product is an automated application intelligence platform designed to reverse engineer an organization’s programs and map out the architecture, dataflows and changes in production. CEO and co-founder Idan Ninyo said the small company – which currently has 20 employees – plans to use the funding to get better, stronger and faster by doubling its 15-person engineering team, adding more automation, development and capabilities to its platform while also expanding market presence.

As companies have increasingly moved to a DevOps model that prioritizes speedy software delivery, Ninyo said, it’s created a chaotic application environment. Bionic's clients and prospective clients often have difficulty putting together a ballpark figure for the number of applications they have running.

“We realized in order to untangle the scales and let organizations know how all the different pieces of software and applications fit together, eventually you must understand how those applications work,” Ninyo said in an interview. “Looking at infrastructure, looking at configurations and so on doesn’t work anymore, especially not in the cloud, especially not in containers where infrastructure is suddenly a commodity.”

This problem can get particularly pronounced during cloud migrations as businesses slowly discard the manual documentation and controls they previously had in place, leading to more confusion. A survey of 388 IT professionals found less than 20 percent believed they have the necessary data to monitor their public cloud environment, 87 percent worry this lack of visibility is masking security threats and nearly half say it contributes to application performance issues.

“The results confirm that comprehensive cloud visibility is key to maintaining cloud security,” the survey concluded.

Application visibility can serve multiple purposes, from organizing software development workflows to helping security teams get a handle on insecure shadow IT and applications. Ninyo said the company wants to serve both of those customers and is focused primarily on expanding their footprint in the U.S. market, where Bionic believes companies are generally further along in their digital transformation journeys than Europe and the growth potential is higher.

“We are aiming to be a very big company and that’s where we need to upgrade in order to that we are such,” said Ninyo.

Derek B. Johnson

Derek is a senior editor and reporter at SC Media, where he has spent the past three years providing award-winning coverage of cybersecurity news across the public and private sectors. Prior to that, he was a senior reporter covering cybersecurity policy at Federal Computer Week. Derek has a bachelor’s degree in print journalism from Hofstra University in New York and a master’s degree in public policy from George Mason University in Virginia.

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