Pay attention to Sera-Brynn. The 4-year-old Suffolk, Va.-based cybersecurity firm earned a spot this week on Cybersecurity Ventures’ inaugural list detailing the top “500 Hot Cybersecurity Companies to Watch in 2015.”
Sera-Brynn was the only company from the Commonwealth to break the top 30, according to Cybersecurity Ventures, the Menlo Park, Ca.-based research and market intelligence firm focused on innovative and emerging companies in the cybersecurity industry.
The Cybersecurity 500 did not rank companies on the list by revenues, employees or annual growth. Rather, the list recognized pioneers in cybersecurity.
Sera-Brynn, a Payment Card Industry Qualified Security Assessor and cyber risk management firm, takes an innovative approach to directly addressing operations that can hurt a company after a cyber-attack, including lack of compliance, insufficient or inadequate cyber insurance and poor response after an incident.
“If not effectively implemented, any one of these three areas can destroy a business after a data breach,” said Darek Dabbs, Sera-Brynn’s Chief Information Officer. “For larger companies, these are the things that decimate shareholder value, instigate lawsuits, and get CEOs fired. Small businesses don’t focus on these areas, which is why 60 percent of them are out of business within six months of a data breach.”
Thousands of potential companies were evaluated before the final list of 500 was released. The review process included soliciting feedback from Chief Information Security Officers and end-user security practitioners, visiting dozens of cybersecurity trade shows and conferences to research companies in-person and conducting extensive online research.
“Cybersecurity is not all about technology,” said John Kipp, Sera-Brynn’s Chief Operating Officer. “It’s about getting the right things taken care of now so that when the inevitable data breach occurs, the financial and reputational impact is absolutely minimized. Ensuring compliance, getting the right insurance, and creating a response plan don’t have to be expensive or time consuming, but they have to get done. The alternative is much, much worse.”
The companies on the hot list, according to Cybersecurity Ventures, proved that they provide solutions that protect large enterprises, small to mid-sized businesses and consumers.
Sera-Brynn’s client list includes Fortune 500 firms, large municipalities, healthcare organizations, financial institutions and nationally recognized non-profits.
Sera-Brynn is staffed by former national intelligence and military information security experts.
It is also the only cybersecurity firm of its kind in the U.S. thanks to its partnership with a large financial institution.
TowneBank (TOWN), one of Virginia’s largest community banks with over $6 billion in assets, partnered with Sera-Brynn in July 2013 to help companies address cyber insurance needs.
“In order to address compliance, insurance and response, partnerships are key,” said Sera-Brynn Executive Vice President Heather Engel. “We have spent the last two years building strong working relationships with legal offices, insurance companies and brokerages, and law enforcement at all levels, up and down the East Coast. Each one of them has a part to play to protecting a business before and after a cyber-attack. We help put it all together.”
Sera-Brynn remains one of the fastest growing private firms in Virginia, with more than 200 percent year-over-year growth since inception.
“Hampton Roads has an enormous amount of latent cyber talent, thanks to the federal contracting infrastructure already in place,” said Rob Hegedus, Sera-Brynn CEO. “We have the opportunity to make Southeastern Virginia the globally recognized leader in Cyber Security Risk Management.”