A team member and well respected Biologist and Computer Scientist began to think about the relationship between computer software and biology. He discovered that just like genomics has a unique DNA that identifies them, so does software. He started to combine the research of Bioinformatics and Computer Science to figure out how he could identify the unique DNA of software executing in memory.
After 10 years of diligent research and advancements in technology, the concept of mapping the DNA of applications and operating systems software, combined with the technology to use that DNA to protect the integrity of executing code became possible.
At that time four years ago, John Murgo took that concept and technology and turned it into a commercially viable company, Digital Immunity.
John understood from the beginning that chasing exploits and trying to identify malicious code was a losing battle. There are too many attackers (and nation states), with many creative people and good ideas. The only way to truly protect a system in memory was to monitor and protect its DNA (how it is supposed to work) at every step of its execution.
Digital Immunity, an IQT Portfolio company that is revolutionizing cyberthreat protection, bridges the gap between real-time threat prevention and 24/7, mission critical environments, so security no longer takes a back seat to production. Digital Immunity provides advanced cyberthreat prevention in Operational Technology (OT), as well as controlled, mission critical Informational Technology (IT) environments, with no impact to production or system performance.
John is the Founder and CEO of Digital Immunity. He has worked with hypergrowth technology companies for all of his career. From Acronis where he was an executive during its historic rise to become one of the leading recovery solutions on the market, to sitting on the board at a number of OT/IT solution companies, John understands what it takes to motivate and move from idea to market viability in short order. In an interview with Insights Success, he shares his valuable insights on how his company is revolutionizing cyber-threat protection Below are the highlights of the interview:
Could you throw some light on your mission and vision statement?
Our vision is to immunize every computer in the world, providing runtime memory protection from any and all exploits and attacks.
Our mission is to stop cyberattacks while shielding good processes from any impact. We serve industrial clients protecting OT and mission-critical endpoints from attack. We mitigate the risk of cyberattack and defer the risk of system patching and upgrade by hardening the operating system and related applications. By mapping the DNA of every application and operating system, we leverage a Bioinformatics and zero-trust approach to protect good processes and stop attacks.
Describe your company and its cutting-edge cyber security solutions which address all the needs of your customers.
Our technology is built to protect endpoints at the point of attack, in the memory of the system at runtime. We extract the DNA of trusted applications and operating systems. In memory during runtime on the protected endpoint, we continuously verify the integrity of executing code by comparing the trusted DNA against the actual executing code. If any code tries to execute that does not match the known good DNA we reject it and shield the good applications and processes to continue to run uninterrupted. We are the last digital mile of protection against attack.
Describe in detail about the work culture and the values that drive your company.
The work culture at Digital Immunity is open and inclusive. We are still a relatively small team, so it is easy to ensure everyone understands our vision, mission, goals and strategy. Everyone at Digital Immunity is passionate about what we are bringing to market; we all fully believe this is game-changing technology. We thrive on bringing value to our clients, innovating and collaborating with our clients and partners.
How are you contributing in the evolution of the cyber security industry?
Our contribution to the industry is to advance the Bioinformatic technique of true protection that doesn’t require knowledge of an attack, or attacker. We are evolving end-point protection to be a critical element that is viable in legacy and mission-critical systems where other approaches do not meet the requirements. The zero-trust approach is simply an understanding of what is good and therefore extends, through a deterministic approach, to stop what is bad. Digital Immunity is changing the game, providing an advantage to the defenders and removing any points of attack.
What technologies are you leveraging to make your solutions resourceful?
We have fully developed all our technology and have 8 patents and more on the way. DI can integrate with and complement the defense-in-depth strategy of our customers. From a deployment perspective, DI is flexible, can be deployed on premise or in the cloud, and integrates with existing workflows to be easily maintained by non-cybersecurity professionals.
What are your company’s future aspirations? What strategies are you undertaking to achieve those goals?
Our aspirations are to have our technology deployed in protection of the OT and mission-critical IT endpoints across industry. We strive to promote the zero-trust model and make our Bioinformatic approach to DNA mapping the de facto standard of endpoint protection. We are partnering with technology companies and service providers to scale faster; a founding member of the ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance to promote best practices; and an active member of the ICS cybersecurity community.
A client in the life science industry is implementing Digital Immunity to defer the risk of patching and legacy system upgrades and said “we were looking for something to make patching irrelevant in OT. I think we found it in Digital Immunity.” Through a deep analysis and assessment of all available technology, Digital Immunity was the only company that can deliver the best protection, securing the OT and mission-critical IT endpoints while shielding the good processes to sustain production without any impact from attempted cyber-attacks. “We’ve just started implementing the solution and it has already done it’s job stopping an attack that made it through every other protection we have in place.”
“Having a tool that gives me visibility of all IT and OT traffic is the first step so I know what to protect. Coupled with that, Digital Immunity is the most important investment. It is superman armor to those industrial applications that are running on the floor. It is the only technology that I know that truly changes the game of not having to patch on a high basis. We can prioritize production and use maintenance windows to do updates, all while remaining secure with DI Protect.”
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