A local cybersecurity company is getting support from the Business Development Bank of Canada as it looks to stem the rising tide of data breaches affecting some of the biggest organizations around the globe.
Ottawa-based Cord3 Innovation announced earlier this month it’s taking on $2 million in financing from BDC Capital’s Growth and Transition division. CEO Kevin Rankin says the company will put the money towards scaling up its security solution into new industries.
Cord3’s cybersecurity software targets the longstanding relationship between system administrator accounts and full access to an organization’s data. This so-called “privileged access” is a root case of numerous data breaches around the world today, as breaking into a single user’s account can then provide unrestricted access to sensitive information.
“Unauthorized data access has become a huge issue that firms and individuals and nations are dealing with every day,” Rankin says.
Firewalls and encrypted passwords might provide layers upon layers of protection, but as long as there’s an account out there that can provide this kind of unfettered access to data, there’s a glaring vulnerability – a back door, of sorts – in companies’ defences.
“No matter how hard we work at cybersecurity, unless we solve that, we're going to continue to see these major breaches,” Rankin says.
Cord3, which has had its software piloted at numerous NATO military exercises, breaks the traditional connection between these “privileged” system administrators and an organization’s sensitive information.
The five-year-old company got its start building software certified for use by the Department of National Defence, but Rankin says the firm intends to branch out with its BDC financing to target other industries that place a premium on real-time data security, especially across borders – fintech and the public sector, for example.
“The economic imperative of doing this well is large for any organization, any nation,” he says.
Thanks to the financing, the 30-person firm will look to grow to roughly 50 local employees over the next few years, Rankin says. The Ottawa talent pool is well-suited for cybersecurity firms, he notes, and he believes the emerging demands for data security will bode well for the capital in the years ahead.
“It's a tremendous sector here in Ottawa, a place where we can expect to see an awful lot of growth,” he says.