Security Experts:

ZeroFOX Raises $74 Million to Expand Social Media Threat Protection Business

Baltimore, MD-based ZeroFOX has raised $74 million in a new funding round led by Intel Capital and including existing vendors NEA, Highland Capital Partners, Redline Capital Management, Hercules Capital and Core Capital. It brings the total funding raised by ZeroFOX to $154.2 million.

ZeroFOX delivers an AI-powered platform that protects users and brands from social media-sourced threats. According to the company's own figures, targeted social media malware is the number one method for breaching an enterprise network; 40% of enterprises have fallen victim to social media spearphishing attacks; and 25% of social media users have received malware. It is an obvious attack route because of the amount of information that can be gathered on the target, and the lower traditional security between enterprise users and the social media platforms they use. ZeroFOX calls it the 'publicly-accessible attack surface'.

ZeroFOX Logo"This new class of threats are more difficult to identify and even tougher to remediate," comments James Foster, CEO of ZeroFOX. "The challenges of both volume and sophistication of these types of attacks are accelerating at a pace that the security industry has never seen before; entire businesses and industries are at risk due to the gaps in security coverage unaddressed by legacy security vendors."

The platform analyzes millions of pieces of publicly-accessible content in platforms such as Microsoft 365, G Suite, LinkedIn, Facebook, Slack, Instagram, and Apple and Google mobile app stores -- looking for potential threats such as account compromise, fraudulent profiles, business email compromise and spear-phishing on digital platforms. The AI analysis, including the company's own Deepstar deepfake detection capability, provides full attack and incident identification, threat intelligence, and automated policy-based remediation. Where necessary, this can include the automated take-down of content that violates the terms of service of the social media and digital platforms.

"With this new infusion of capital," says Foster, "we will accelerate our AI innovation, strengthen our intellectual property, and further our international expansion."

"We're looking forward to collaborating with the company," adds Anthony Lin, VP and senior managing director at Intel Capital. to accelerate its strategic expansion globally and its compelling technology roadmap."

ZeroFOX was founded in 2013 by Chris Cullison (VP, emerging technologies), Evan Blair (VP, channel sales), Hillary Herlehy (chief people officer), James Foster (CEO), and Robert Francis. This latest late stage funding follows $2.2 million (seed, July 2013), $11 million (Series A, April 2014), $27 million (Series B, Dec 2015), and $40 million (Series C, July 2017).

Related: Misinformation Woes Could Multiply With 'Deepfake' Videos 

Related: A CISO's Nightmare: Digital Social Engineering 

Related: The Next Big Cybercrime Vector: Social Media 

Related: Should Social Media be Considered Part of Critical Infrastructure? 

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Kevin Townsend is a Senior Contributor at SecurityWeek. He has been writing about high tech issues since before the birth of Microsoft. For the last 15 years he has specialized in information security; and has had many thousands of articles published in dozens of different magazines – from The Times and the Financial Times to current and long-gone computer magazines.