“Hackers will target businesses through remote workers and crypto mining hacks will continue to grow. – George Egri, Co-Founder and CEO, BitNinja Security – Web Hosting | Cloud Computing | Data center
Today is the modern information age where more and more devices and objects are connected to each other. This makes cybersecurity a very relevant topic. Data breaches are a common concern for organizations of all sizes today.
This week we interviewed George Egri, co-founder and CEO of BitNinja Security. A trusted name in server protection, BitNinja protects servers around the world with its efficient, state-of-the-art solutions. Read on.
J: How did you start BitNinja?
g: I had and still have a web hosting company. About six years ago, we received a lot of customer complaints due to hacked websites. We tried to combine the different tools on the market to secure our clients’ servers against different types of cyber attacks, but it got unmanageable after a while. So we decided to solve this problem by creating an all-in-one internal solution. This project was the ancestor of BitNinja. We realized that this could be beneficial not only for us, but also for the shared hosting industry and for the entire Internet. Therefore, we started to establish their resources on BitNinja and make the Internet more secure.
J: What types of products does BitNinja offer and who is it for?
g: We have two products. One of them is ServerProtection. It is a multi-layered defense system that protects Linux servers and hosted websites from a wide range of cyber attacks. The majority of attacks are automated, botnet generated, and cause a lot of headaches for system administrators and website owners. Our ServerProtection product is an all-in-one, easy-to-use tool for shared hosting companies, but can be useful for anyone running a LAMP stack.
Our other product is SiteProtection, which launched at the end of last year. It defends websites and e-commerce businesses against targeted attacks.
J: Why do you think your product is better than that of the competition?
g: BitNinja relies heavily on the user community to secure servers and websites. There are many excellent system administrators, software engineers, and security enthusiasts among the BitNinja user community. We build our security platform on this community of users and give them tools to secure their resources and power the entire platform. A good example is our IP reputation system. We provide good basic functionality to automatically list gray IP addresses, but many users also use our toolset to build their own defense system, and the whole community benefits from their work as we automatically elevate IP addresses. suspects to our worldwide lists.
Another example is our malware detection module which also provides tools for our users to add their own signatures. Adding a signature at the user level also benefits globally and makes the entire system more resilient. Our main strategy is to trust our users to make the internet safer together.
J: What was the very first important step in the life of the company?
g: I think the first really important milestone was the Seed Round investment. This resulted in a massive boom in BitNinja’s life. Not only the money but also the help of professionals, such as the founders of BalaBit and Ustream. BalaBit (acquired by One Identity) was a startup specializing in the development of computer security systems, and IBM acquired Ustream and now operates under the name IBM Cloud Video. And of course the second was the Series A Round last October, and hopefully the launch of SiteProtection will be next, but we need time to call it a milestone.
J: What was the most recent success in the life of the company?
g: The last one was the Cybersecurity Excellence Awards. We provide an all-in-one cybersecurity tool, and this international rewards program has proven it! We won in 13 different categories. Almost all of our modules have been awarded. We are really proud of it.
J: There was less than a year between the Seed series and the A series. How fast did you grow during that time?
g: When we closed the initial investment cycle in November 2019, we were 19. As of March 2021, we had 50 ninjas on the team. At the same time, we have also doubled our income.
J: You mentioned that your Series A was in October 2020. What goals would you like to achieve with this investment?
g: BitNinja has a mission: to make the Internet a safer place. And, of course, we have a long term goal. It’s about defending 100 million websites. We want to make every decision with these goals in mind. To achieve these goals, we need new investment cycles. After Series A, we plan to create a successful go-to-market strategy for our B2C (SiteProtection) product and monitor the progress.
J: How do you plan to keep this growing?
g: Most of our positions are now filled, and we can manage and develop smoothly the tasks related to ServerProtection. On the other hand, we have a new product, so we need to take it to the next level and build a team around that product as well. SiteProtection has enormous market potential and we believe it can help us achieve our goals.
We are planning to open a US-based marketing and sales office, as a large portion of our current users are from the US. We believe this will help us achieve a more significant market share in this region.
J: What has been the biggest challenge in the life of your business?
g: Long story short. We realized that our competitor was surpassing us in terms of malware detection. We decided to put more effort into upgrading this add-on, and now we have an award-winning anti-malware system.
J: How has the cyber threat landscape evolved over the years?
g: There is not a lot of innovation in terms of cyber attacks. There are plenty of unprotected servers and websites around the world, so the old ways are more than enough for hackers to achieve what they want.
J: What trends do you expect in cybersecurity?
g: I hope businesses take cybersecurity more seriously and spend more money on it in the future. I don’t think hackers are going to invent completely new types of attacks, but their targets and motivation may change. They’ll probably focus a lot more on remote workers and try to hack businesses through them and crypto mining-related hacks that have come up in recent years, and I think they will continue to grow.
J: What do you do in your spare time when you’re not running the business?
g: I spend my time with my family. I read a lot and build a domestic robot.
Read more: “Large-scale workloads will be the primary driver of data center growth demand” – Michael DeVito, Iron Mountain Data Centers