Dubai-Based Cybersecurity Startup SpiderSilk Secures Funding
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Dubai-based cybersecurity startup SpiderSilk has successfully raised US$500,000 in a seed round led by Global Ventures, joined by FutureTech, Xische Ventures, and a couple of angel investors, one of whom is Careem co-founder Magnus Olsson. Founded in 2019 by Rami El Malak and Mosab Hussein, SpiderSilk advises companies on how to improve their cybersecurity by simulating real-life cyberattacks to uncover threats and vulnerabilities, and offering advice and support on how to protect themselves.
The co-founders, who have had previous forays into entrepreneurship (El Malak has previously founded businesses, while Hussein has had stints at startups like Careem and TaskSpotting), had noticed rising trends in the cybersecurity space, namely how complex systems open up a company’s potential vulnerabilities, as well as how open-source tools and malware can be bought and used to launch attacks, and how there aren’t many vendors addressing issues from a security as a service. “We realized that we could play a role in protecting organizations from ever-increasing cyber-threats, especially in light of the current geo-political climate,” says El Malak.
The young startup has already collaborated with a few organizations in the public and private sector both regionally and globally, which include Lenovo, Panasonic, Samsung, Souq, Huawei, NavBlue and a number of government entities, one of them being Dubai Police’s cybercrime division. In 2019, SpiderSilk was in the news for finding data leak vulnerabilities at WeWork wherein a GitHub repository was found leaking confidential contracts and other data from its customers, as well as for discovering an exposed database on MoviePass’ subdomains that listed their customers’ card numbers and other personal details. Having successfully raised funds for his startup’s seed round now, El Malak advises entrepreneurs looking for investment today to keep in mind the economic climate, and carefully choose their investors.
“Money is great, but it’s never enough, El Malak says. “Strategic investors add significantly more value, even if you assume you only need money.” He adds, “Don’t get hung up on valuations and miss the big picture.” From the investor’s standpoint, Global Ventures General Partner Noor Sweid noted that her company’s investment in SpiderSilk is a nod to the growth of the cybersecurity sector, as well as the startup’s potential to be a leading player in it.
“The company is leveraging proprietary machine-driven technology to simulate real-life cyberattacks, and has already onboarded a list of regional and international clients such as the Ministry of Justice in KSA, the UAE Government Office, Huawei, and a large data analytics company in the US, amongst others,” Sweid explains. “This truly illustrates SpiderSilk’s ability to scale not only regionally, but also internationally.”