Data compliance startup Hyperproof raises $4M as pandemic puts spotlight on security and privacy

The Hyperproof team, photographed pre-COVID pandemic. The company now totals 35 people. (Hyperproof Photo)

Hyperproof, a Bellevue, Wash.-based startup that helps companies comply with state and international privacy and data protection laws, has raised a $4 million seed round.

“We are growing fast and this raise is allowing us to build out both additional enterprise product capabilities and our go-to-market efforts, specifically in sales, partnerships and marketing,” said founder and CEO Craig Unger.

The cash infusion, raised mostly from existing backers, brings the company’s total fundraising to $10 million over three rounds.

The company launched in 2018 and began selling and marketing its product a year ago. Hyperproof has more than 50 customers and 35 employees.

Craig Unger, founder and CEO, Hyperproof, with peacock. (Hyperproof Photo)

Safeguarding sensitive digital information is arguably more important and difficult than ever. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, an unprecedented amount of work, education and healthcare are taking place online. At the same, there’s a growing understanding of the degree to which our digital lives are under attack: the recently revealed assault on cybersecurity tied to Russia includes hacking affecting at least 250 U.S. agencies and large corporations.

Add to that the challenges of meeting regulations such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The pandemic slowed the company’s work until about May, Unger said. “We are seeing strong revenue expansion in the initial customer set who are now coming up for renewal,” he noted.

Toward the end of last year, the startup began working on tools to help larger enterprises that need to comply with the CCPA and GDPR.

Hyperproof is pioneering software that the field has dubbed “compliance operations” or “comops” as a sort of parallel to the streamlining and efficiency that “‘devops’ brought to development teams,” Unger said.

The security and privacy compliance sector is clearly a hot one. In June, the Atlanta-based privacy software powerhouse OneTrust acquired Seattle startup Integris Software, which launched in 2016. New York-based BigID is another powerful player in the field, with $216 million in funding. Preclusio, a privacy compliance startup with operations in Seattle and the Bay Area, got its start in 2019.

And what changes could the incoming Biden administration bring to the field?

“The common wisdom is that the new administration will be more stringent in the areas of cybersecurity and privacy which could have the effect of increasing regulatory burdens. However, if the administration pursues standardization there is always the potential to streamline,” Unger said. “A coordinated approach to privacy driven by the federal government could just as easily lower the regulatory burden as raise it.”

Unger previously co-founded Azuqua, a cloud-based integration and automation company that was acquired by Okta three years ago. Unger began his career at Microsoft where he worked for nearly 20 years, leaving the role of general manager of Dynamics CRM.

Mekhato profiled Hyperproof in March 2020 as a Startup Spotlight.

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