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Israel second to US for cyber-defender firms

Israeli startups Argus, Indegy and Illusive Networks are among the promising security companies listed in CB Insights report

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

Illustrative photo of hackers in Tel Aviv taking part in a hackathon to develop cyber-security apps (Courtesy)
Illustrative photo of hackers in Tel Aviv taking part in a hackathon to develop cyber-security apps (Courtesy)

Israel has the second highest concentration of cyber-defense companies in the world after the United States, a new report shows.

The report by New York data firm CB Insights lists the nine most influential sectors of cyber-security innovation in 2017 and the 30 startups that have pioneering technology and the potential to shape the future of cyber-security.

The tech companies were assessed on a number of categories, including quantum encryption, deception security, automobile security, Internet of Things security, cyber insurance, mobile security, autonomous systems, critical infrastructure security and predictive intelligence.

Three Israel-based companies are mentioned in the report.

Argus, which has raised $30 million to date, protects private and commercial vehicles from cyber-attacks, whereas Tel Aviv-based Indegy, which has raised $18 million, according to the report, has created a software that protects critical infrastructures from cyber-attacks. Illusive Networks, specializing in cyber protection and the use of deception technology, has raised some $30 million from investors, including Microsoft Ventures and Bessemer Ventures.

The three biggest investors in cyber-defense firms in 2012-2016 were Bessemer Venture Partners, Google Ventures and Accel Partners, the report said.

Cyber security startups have raised $12.5 billion in 2012-2016 across 1,222 VC-backed deals globally, according to the report said. The amounts VC funds have invested in the sector has jumped from $1.32 billion in 2012 to $3.67 billion in 2015 and dropped to $3.1 billion in 2016, the data shows, with the largest share of the deals going to fund startups at early stages of development, at seed or Series A funding round.

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