We’re Back… and We Brought the Future of Cybersecurity

It’s been a while since our last blog post, and there’s a reason for that…

Like many others (and probably most of you reading this), over the last year we’ve observed a significant increase in the number of cyberattacks, and a growing diversity in cyber threat type. What’s more, cyberattacks don’t discriminate – commercial industries and government institutions alike are common victims of cyberattacks, creating a complex and multifaceted cybersecurity problem. Our population’s dependence on sophisticated technology continues to grow and, at the same time, the threat environment continues to evolve in a uniquely dynamic and daunting way.

Just how secure is your cybersecurity?

Concerned by looming cyber threats and data breaches, we began thinking about ways to apply our machine learning and behavioral analysis experience toward solving the problem. We realized that, while necessary, traditional, reactive perimeter-based approaches to cybersecurity are insufficient, and that artificial intelligence driven network defense would provide a more resilient security posture.

We approached the problem with the mindset that your systems would be compromised. It’s just too easy. Exploiting security flaws, social engineering, zero-day attacks, insider threats… if someone knows what they’re doing, they can probably infiltrate your network. When they do, most threats are not discovered for at least 150 days, if ever. That’s more than enough time to extract any data the attacker needs to cause harm. What’s more, your data integrity is now compromised – any software corruption, data changes or malware have been immortalized into the organization’s long term backups. The costs of cleanup and potential impact to reputation can be tremendous.

Introducing NitroDefender™: Cyber Immune Response™

When tackling the issue of persistent cyberattacks, we used the human immune system as a guide. The human body has not been exposed to all the viruses in the world, and viruses are constantly mutating. But your body knows you; it knows itself. It knows what’s ‘normal’ and it generally identifies compromises and mobilizes against the threat.

For example, if you catch a common cold, you might tell someone that you “may be comingCyberImmuneResponse down with something.” Your body has already detected an anomaly within, and you can feel that something is wrong. This triggers your immune system to respond to the threat, releasing antibodies to seek and destroy pathogens.

We wanted our solution to provide that same response; trigger that same level of “something is not right” that your body experiences. That’s why NitroDefender™ was designed to mimic human immune system functions, providing what we call the Cyber Immune Response™ that delivers rapid threat identification, accelerated response and threat prevention capabilities.

Operation Stealth Mode

After initial designs were complete and development was underway, we shared our approach and progress with some members of the military and intelligence community. We’re talking industry vets who were very attuned to the day-to-day challenges of cyber defense. After review, we were encouraged to “commercialize and bring this to market as soon as possible.”

Once it was clear that we would have a market leading solution for cyber defense, it became a sense of obligation and purpose to bring this product to market. NitroDefender™ safeguards data more comprehensively and intelligently than security solutions that have preceded it. The opportunity to help reduce cybercrime and ultimately contribute to a safer world became a driving force for team Nitro. We wanted to deliver a superior cyber defense solution as soon as possible.

The team knew it was time for action, and that action required some transformation. We elected to pivot Nitro’s direction and have most of our employees focus on the creation of NitroDefender™. We chose to operate in stealth mode, not updating our website or social media until we had a product in the last mile of release. Once the finish line was in sight and we needed to activate our partner and distribution channels, it was time for the world to meet NitroDefender™.

Cybersecurity solution - NitroDefender

So what is NitroDefender™?

NitroDefender™ is the first cybersecurity solution to utilize unsupervised deep neural networks to guard against complex cyberattacks. It is modeled after the human immune system, delivering a Cyber Immune Response™ to alert to cyber threats in real time. It uses artificial intelligence, machine learning and unsupervised deep neural networks to observe network traffic, learn ‘normal’ behavior, and predict and detect cyberattacks.

The solution is provided as an appliance, installed locally within a user’s datacenter. It seamlessly plugs into the network, learning and monitoring without any disruption to existing business operations.

The system can detect anomalies caused by zero-day attacks and other generally unknown activities that compromise networks using techniques yet to be discovered and patched by vendors. While our initial approach was to solve external threat detection, we quickly realized that in modern businesses, it’s almost impossible to distinguish “internal” and “external.” Our technology environments are so complex and so intertwined that “inside” becomes “outside” and vulnerabilities are opened up everywhere.

Plus, what’s the use of external threat detection if the threat is already inside? Our unique, multi-engine approach enables NitroDefender™ to discover insider threats as well. Whether it’s cyber espionage carried out by employees or contractors, software being used that violates corporate compliance and policies, data transfers outside the organization, system hacking or any other unusual activity, we’ll catch it.

WarGames1Through the WOPR dashboard (Warnings, Oversight, Protection & Response – yes, Professor Falken, it’s a WarGames reference), a user can see information on number of threats detected, view health of the system, and learn about the people, devices and network to determine what ‘normal’ behavior is. An amazing 3D visualizer (created using game visualization) provides a cyber analyst with real-time views of the network, traffic movement, threat events, compliance enforcement and much more.

In the last year, we’ve been working quietly and diligently behind the scenes to ready NitroDefender™. We’ve formalized a sales distribution plan, to include a Channel Partner Program, established protocol and secured resellers and pilot launch partners. Additionally, we’ve joined forces with a new CEO and a distinguished advisory board, all with extensive industry knowledge.

Appliance_Transparent_BG4The NitroDefender™ appliance will be a Made in America, designed, built and finished product, with all development occurring from our downtown Tampa headquarters. If you’d like to learn a little more about NitroDefender™, head on over to our product site at https://nitrodefender.com

That’s all for now, but don’t go far. Much more to come.

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About Pete Slade

Pete Slade is Nitro’s president and CTO. He drives the technology vision for Nitro Solutions, and works actively with the development team to create advanced machine-learning technology platforms. Additionally, he oversees the implementation of Nitro’s R&D technology strategies. Pete has more than 30 years’ experience in software development and technology practices, in roles ranging from developer to architect to chief technology officer. He is an expert in a range of technical operating systems, languages and databases, and he holds various technological patents.