Bracket Computing advancements boost enterprise cloud security control

Computing Cell software encrypts data, protects the keys with policies.

Bracket Computing CEO Tom Gillis

Bracket Computing is expanding its cloud-storage data protection offerings and has received an additional $46.4 million in venture funding to further develop its products and roll them out worldwide.

Now in addition to Bracket’s Computing Cell service, customers can license an in-house version of the technology and control all aspects of the encryption/policy enforcement/data integrity platform.

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Computing Cell is software beneath the operating system that provides a single security and management layer that applies to data no matter where it resides, and that includes data stored in multiple public clouds, says Bracket CEO Tom Gillis.

All the data stored is 256 AES encrypted and customers maintain custody of the master keys in hardware security modules. Computing Cell policies enable deriving the necessary keys to decrypt data if the intended use meets policies, Gillis says.

The software also maintains a check-sum of encrypted data in order to verify it hasn’t been tampered with before it is decrypted. The same capability can verify the integrity of boot disks and master images stored in the cloud, he says.

The upside is that Computing Cell imposes security and management without requiring any changes to the applications being run on the machines, says Peter Christy, an analyst with 451 Research. The policy plane enables creation of security domains that span the various clouds where data might be stored, he says.

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The whole security/management process is invisible to end users, he says, making it more appealing.

Pricing for the software license is based on number of cores it runs on. Pricing for the service is based on CPUs per hour and Gigabytes per month of storage.

The new round of funding comes from Fidelity Management and Research Company and Goldman Sachs as well as previous investors Allegis Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, ARTIS Ventures, Columbus Nova Technology Partners, Norwest Venture Partners, and Sutter Hill Ventures, plus strategic investors GE and Qualcomm. The total investment is now $131.4 million.

The company, based in Mountain View, Calif., was founded in October 2011 by Gillis and CTO Jason Lango. Gillis is the former vice president/general manager of Cisco's Security Technology Group, and Lango was in charge of network security and firewall product architecture as principal engineer also in Cisco's Security Technology Group. In addition Gillis, Lango and Brackett’s CFO, vice president of marketing, vice president of sales and vice president of customer service all worked for IronPort, which was sold to Cisco.

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