Piiano raises $9M to secure and control PII with data privacy engineering for the cloud

Piiano announced that it has raised a $9M seed round. The round was led by cybersecurity-focused VC YL Ventures with the participation of Jibe Ventures and founders of cybersecurity companies such as Snyk, Armis, Wiz and Aqua.

Piiano seed round

Founded by security experts Gil Dabah and Ariel Shiftan—whose cybersecurity firm, NorthBit, was acquired by Magic Leap in 2016 to lead its product security—Piiano will deliver a personal data protection and management platform that transforms how enterprises build privacy-forward architecture and operationalize privacy practices.

Beginning with Piiano’s Vault—a dedicated, protected database for centralizing sensitive information—and a code scanner to locate PII, the solution represents a technological and cultural shift in sensitive data handling. The platform enables security and privacy teams to monitor and gain data-driven insights into privacy artifacts from application code bases and empowers developers to easily partition and isolate PII.

According to an IBM survey, 44% of data breaches involve the loss of customers’ personally identifiable information (PII). Moreover, between 2020 and 2021, the cost of each compromised record rose by nearly 10%. Today, enterprises collect sensitive information including finance, health, contact details and social security numbers, despite a lack of adequate data protection solutions.

High profile data leaks, such as those recently experienced by T-Mobile and Facebook, underscore that neither size nor massive security budgets assure consumer privacy. To remedy the problem, security and privacy experts are increasingly looking to privacy engineering, a practice of building privacy requirements into system architectures that enables organizations to scale its management and implementation more effectively and efficiently.

The Piiano Vault provides enterprises with the infrastructure to centralize and secure PII and other select sensitive data within their own environments. As the home of all sensitive data and PII, the Piiano Vault will serve as a secure PII directory that keeps other data stores pseudonymized. Deployed in the enterprise’s virtual private cloud, the Vault enables developers to build privacy while empowering privacy and security personnel to manage data, track its access and enforce advanced policies. By remaining in the enterprise’s cloud environment, the self-hosted Vault offers an alternative to the exposure or policy violations risked by storing data with external service providers.

“Piiano’s cutting through privacy complexity with its privacy-forward approach, which encourages enterprises to treat all future incoming PII with the highest order of privacy mindfulness,” said Justinian Fortenberry, Global Chief Information Security Officer at Zip Co Ltd. “Placing this sensitive information in the Piiano Vault helps resolve the risk faced in the event of a breach without having to risk more exposure. It’s an incredible strategy that offers the most efficient returns on privacy and security spend.”

The code scanner will help security and privacy teams locate decentralized PII data and limit its drift. According to Andy Ellis, former CISO of Akamai, this hands-off approach to data and environments represents the company’s greatest point of differentiation from extant privacy practices and solutions. “Piiano’s ground-up innovation redefines how enterprises execute security and privacy by reducing the privacy risk of a breach to zero. Their pioneering work in privacy engineering enables any company at any stage to deploy a unified PII management system that starts at the code and database level.”

Piiano will use the initial round of capital for R&D and go to market. “We’re so excited to see Gil and Ariel working together again to redraw the lines of where data protection can—and should—start,” said John Brennan, partner at YL Ventures. “Their visionary approach towards this still nascent and highly complex space is owed to their combined experience and expertise.”

The Piiano Vault demo release will be made available upon launch.




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