Cerby: The Antidote for Shadow IT
Cerby Series A helps combat the $400 billion shadow IT problem
The term “shadow IT” isn’t as nefarious as it sounds: it’s simply when a non-IT employee uses an app without approval from their IT department. But shadow IT is a problem — a $400 billion problem, to be exact — and Ridge Ventures’ lead investment in Cerby’s Series A is a huge step in plugging the countless security gaps caused by unauthorized app use.
Cerby is a security automation platform that’s bringing the shadow IT issue to light and, most importantly, implementing an ingenious approach that encourages transparency and helps prevent breaches. This is significant considering one out of every two apps used in the workplace is purchased by a non-IT buyer (globally, about $400 billion in spending) and two out of three security teams believe employee-onboarded technologies pose the most risk to enterprises, per SafeGuardCyber.
Exacerbating the shadow IT risk is the post-pandemic adoption of remote work. Decentralized work environments have seriously proliferated the amount of non-IT apps, and 71% of US users now circumvent IT policies. Non-IT employees love the boost in productivity; bad actors love (and IT personnel loathe) the uptick in security vulnerabilities.
Cerby, founded amid the pandemic, is the first solution to mitigate shadow IT risk by empowering, versus policing, employees. Its unique incentives-based system encourages non-IT users to register their non-IT-managed apps, allowing Cerby’s platform to recognize and automatically correct any security lapses. This automated approach beats the old school process by a landslide, as IT and non-IT buyers can address security holes directly, and swiftly, without having to wait for app developers.
A key differentiator for Cerby is its automation of an entire app’s lifecycle, including all of the security-related settings and tasks that give the average user the heebie jeebies. More efficient, more safe, less stressful. Cerby’s platform also meshes perfectly with a customer’s existing corporate identity provider, such as Okta.
The masterminds behind Cerby are co-founder/CEO Belsasar Lepe, whose previous stops include Ooyala (co-founder/CEO), a video platform that enjoyed two exits totaling more than $440 million, and automated data platform Impira (Head of Product); and Vidal Gonzalez, who’s co-founded and held CTO roles at three companies (Cerby, Wizeline, Inviko). Belsasar and Vidal cover every square of our Ridge founder bingo card, most notably their thorough domain expertise and experience founding multiple startups.
Cerby’s Series A comes just over a year after its Seed round. Since then, the company’s been servicing Fortune 1000 customers and beefing up its integrations with the likes of Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and more. Soon, thanks to its new funding, Cerby’s integrations will span 5,000 of the most popular apps on the market.
Welcome to The Ridge Familia, Cerby team, and hello to our fellow investors in this round, including Founder’s Fund, Okta Ventures, and Salesforce Ventures. We’re excited to see what fireworks lie ahead as Cerby continues to separate itself in the burgeoning security automation category.