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SRI Ventures Announces New Spin-out, Confidencial

June 2022 by Valentin Jangwa, Global Security Mag

SRI Ventures, the corporate venture arm of SRI International, announced the launch of its spin-out company, Confidencial, a startup providing privacy-enhancing technologies to secure sensitive information within existing business applications. Distributed enterprises that rely on multiple information touchpoints will be able to selectively block sensitive information (e.g, intellectual property, personal and financial details) seamlessly within MS Office and Google Workspace with Confidencial.

Confidencial’s core technologies are rooted in two DARPA programs, Brandeis and RACE. The programs aim to harden security and privacy for various types of data and information used in distributed infrastructure, online collaboration and business workflows and messaging applications. Confidencial also leverages natural language processing technologies from SRI to automate application of protection techniques.

Confidencial’s platform can be automatically deployed to protect collaborative workflows today. “The platform utilizes current cryptographic standards to be immediately applicable, but is designed to be agile and evolve with an enterprise as such standards become quantum-safe,” said Karim Eldefrawy, co-founder and CTO, and a key inventor of the underlying technologies in his previous role as a principal computer scientist at SRI.

Confidencial has completed an oversubscribed seed round. In addition to SRI International, seed round investors include WERU Investment, First Spark Ventures, Airstream Venture Partners, Perot Jain, and Brandin Cooks. Confidencial had previously raised a pre-seed round in April of 2021 with SRI International and MDSV.

After 12 months of development, Confidencial is launching a private beta product for a small community of business customers in June. Confidencial’s early adopters are in numerous sectors including defense, financial services, life sciences, legal services, and sports and entertainment.

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