Pushing its vision to make Hadoop more viable for the enterprise, Sqrrl has raised $5.2 million in Series A financing to promote Big Data security, a booming market opportunity as CIOs and cybercriminals alike recognize its value.
Much like CIOs, hackers are increasingly recognizing the value of Big Data. While organizations are tapping into new information sources to drive efficiencies and gain competitive advantage, cybercriminals are developing more sophisticated tools and techniques for compromising systems that store large volumes of sensitive information. Hadoop, the de facto framework for Big Data processing, is becoming their number one target.
Bringing security to the data
A startup called Sqrrl is addressing the growing security threat to data-driven organizations with Accumulo, an open source key-value store that lets admins assign access privileges at the cell level. Originally developed to meet the unique security requirements of the NSA, the platform had been tried and tested in the field by the time it was submitted the Apache Foundation in late 2011.
“Considering the national debate around privacy, clearly there is a need for Big Data technology that at once provides advanced analytic functionality and safeguards sensitive data,” commented Wikibon Principal Analyst Jeff Kelly. “Sqrrl Analytics, which leverages Apache Accumulo and Apache Hadoop, makes powerful Big Data analytics more accessible to more end-users thanks to its cell-level security capabilities combined with analytic application development tools.”
Furthering its vision to make Hadoop more viable for the enterprise, Sqrrl announced this week that it has raised $5.2 million in Series A financing from existing investors Atlas Venture and Matrix Partners. The firm will use the capital to accelerate its growth plans, which CEO Mark Terenzoni discussed on theCUBE at Hadoop Summit 2013. (See full commentary below.)
“We’re a technology company, we need to influx more talent to the company,” the executive said. “We’ll continue to support Accumulo and continue to contribute to that and we built an ecosystem around that. We don’t have an Accumulo show, yet, but you have my word that [in] 2014 you’ll start to see a bigger community built around that.”
Sqrrl is marking its latest funding round with the release of Sqrrl Enterprise 1.2, the newest version of its flagship offering. The release introduces improvements to the Sqrrl Query Language, faster data retrieval and a Labeling Engine that automates the application of security labels to individual pieces of data. The database has also been integrated Blueprints API to enable graph storage and query.
Appealing to developer NoSQL community
This is all part of Sqrrl’s ecosystem development, which will rely heavily on a willing community of developers and practitioners. NoSQL is at the heart of this ecosystem growth potential, as the Big Data industry fully realizes the growing demand for security in this sector.
According to Wikibon co-founder and Chief Analyst Dave Vellante, the critical path for Sqrrl is in “attracting developers, as the NoSQL space is a scramble for a ‘loose ball.’ Sqrrl has a unique niche because security is a fundamental component of its value proposition and can be used to get a foothold in the market;” then scale from there.