I had a good friend once who worked for the History Channel who used to run these races – Ragnar Relays. The concept is really interesting: you take a group of people, divide up the course into segments, and each person runs a handful of segments of a long and arduous race over the course of a day or two. It’s like one of the track events in high school or college but over a longer distance, a much more scenic course, and you have to do your part a few times over the course of this overnight run. Each person carries their weight, and then hands off to another teammate so they can rest up for their next leg.
I am sitting on a train riding home as I write this thinking about our corporate launch that ‘goes off’ Tuesday and the concept of these Ragnar Relays made an apt analogy for how we are launching, Michael, Rob, Stefan, and Will got together, fomented a few really good ideas, then spent a few years running hard, building the team, hiring amazing people, and laying the foundation for future growth and a culture that should last.
Then we spent the last six months assembling a go-to-market team that could complement our engineering team’s experience and skill. It was amazing watching a group go from non-existent to forming, to executing a company and product launch in less than twelve weeks. I’m very proud of the team we have and feel it is the right mix to carry us forward – they are finishing their first leg of the relay and passing that baton to our sales and systems engineering counterparts – and the race will go on.
One question our employees get asked a lot and haven’t been able to answer for the past two years is ‘So, what are you building at work?’ The nice part of a public announcement is now everyone can at least share with their friends and families what it is they have worked so hard on for the past years.
So what did we build? (I’m not so bold as to use a grandiose metaphor, compare it to famous cult films, the Apollo Program, or try to over-hype it — I’ll save that bluster for others that need it.) In short – We built a very secure computing system – what we call a Hyper-Secured Infrastructure.
I am doing our development a bit of a disservice in being so brief. Basically we looked at the variety of ways that a server gets owned, the types of capabilities we often layer on after we have acquired it, and said – ‘Let’s make the default operating behaviors of this device as secure as possible for an enterprise or mid-market customer.’ So when someone opens up the box, takes out our SkySecure Server and plugs it in the system is operating securely: it verifies and attests no malware or rootkits are installed,boots a hardened operating system, captures and logs every transaction, policy change, administrative action, and denied connection.
Our system is an amalgam of many technologies – oftentimes analysts have asked me if we are one company or four because of the breadth of the systems architecture and the audacity of our vision. It is still really hard to communicate the scope of the system in a few minutes, and certainly not in a blog post or two. Maybe its easier to think about what we aimed to deliver, what customer experience we wanted to enable:
Our belief is simple – our customers should have something in their IT infrastructure that is a root of trust they can build on top of. That trusted system is used to protect and verify critical control points in their networks. It must be asy to use, hard to break into and even harder to get data out of. It needs to embrace a security model that is not an option a developer can turn off or disable. It needs to make the default operating behavior of every element of the stack secured and locked down. It needs to make the lives of IT and Security professionals simpler and easier.
If you want to learn more we have a webinar coming up Thursday where Dan Backman and myself will be going through the systems architecture, the major components, capabilities, and highlighting our customer use cases. We’re pretty open folks, so feel free to attend, ask us questions, give us feedback, and help us build a better product and offering.
P.S. now where is that darn baton… we’re definitely hiring if someone wants to pick it up and run a leg or two. It’s a great time!