Some people may have thought the multi-billion dollar acquisition that included Easy Solutions would have made a fitting end for me. This is only the beginning. Today, I am introducing you to Lumu Technologies, which brings a radical shift in the approach to cybersecurity. Here’s the backstory.
It’s been almost 25 years since I first reviewed TCP/IP as a driver to connect ATMs to the network. Upon looking back, I realize this is where my deep passion to secure enterprises originated. This is where my life transformed. This is where my mind fixated and raced in pursuit of more knowledge.
While I was captivated by this technology, I predicted there would be trouble due to an inherent lack of trust. We’ve seen it, and we will continue to see it. If we consider just a few decimals points of the 4+ billion internet users to have malicious intention, we have a massive problem. Cybercrime damages are expected to reach $6 trillion by 2021 according to Cybersecurity Ventures latest report of Cybercrime.
I recognized this fundamental trust challenge early, and it landed me with high visibility positions at Unisys and Internet Security Systems (acquired by IBM). I developed into a cybersecurity expert and witnessed firsthand how criminals were moving faster than enterprises. These early experiences exposed me to opportunities and ignited my spark of entrepreneurship which led me to build Easy Solutions, The Total Fraud Protection Company. Easy Solutions eventually sold to Cyxtera Technologies in a combined transaction value of $2.8 billion.
I witnessed firsthand how criminals were moving faster than enterprises
- Ricardo Villadiego
My time at Easy Solutions was nothing short of remarkable. We helped financial institutions fight back against fraud and criminals who were constantly revamping their schemes. As I used to tell my colleagues, when you defeat fraudsters, they don’t quit and drive Uber. They come back with something even more sophisticated.
Fraud prevention has a unique characteristic in that it is relatively simple to quantify. An anti-fraud system can run in a closed loop, set a clear goal and provide feedback. The Total Fraud Protection platform ran as such from day 1 and relied on self-improvement until the goal was ultimately achieved.
While at Easy Solutions, I was tempted to jump into the traditional enterprise market. I loved that market from my days at ISS, and it was incredible following the breaches and watching the gap between compromise and detection. I was in awe that it was taking enterprises six to 18 months on average, and in some cases up to seven years, to know they were breached. These were not mom and pop shops either. These were enterprises with impressive security budgets and resources, and they already had all the data to identify their compromise level.
Feeling my mission achieved at Easy Solutions and then Cyxtera Technologies, I was compelled to put my mind into this problem. Contrary to anti-fraud systems, most traditional enterprise security systems (if not all) run as an open-loop system. These systems do not measure output to identify if corrections are needed. An enterprise deploys the technology and “hopes” everything goes well.
Enterprises will always know their level of compromise
- Ricardo Villadiego
To be fair, cybercrime is vastly different than any other type of crime including fraud. Its detection is unusually complex and challenging. But I believe enterprises can benefit immensely from closed-loop feedback to stop breaches with speed. Obstacles have never stopped humanity before; remember we put a man on the moon.
So today I’m introducing Lumu Technologies, which mission is to add a self-learning feedback loop to transform enterprise cybersecurity. With Lumu, organizations will have the needed insight to sharpen cyber defenses and stop breaches with speed. Enterprises will stay illuminated and always know their level of compromise for optimal cyber resilience.
Lumu will also incorporate the concept of continuous compromise assessment, which assumes enterprises are compromised and proves otherwise. This approach will significantly enhance and bolster cybersecurity architectures.
My vision is to continue transforming cybersecurity and to revolutionize the industry and fight cybercrime at the root. I invite you all to join me on this exciting new adventure!