CirroScope: Stealthy cloud security startup hatched by ex-Symantec teammates

A small team of ex-Symantec security experts has formed a stealthy Silicon Valley start-up called CirroScope that's focused on shielding enterprises from threats stemming from their use of SaaS applications such Box, Salesforce.com and Google Apps.

CirroScope is keeping things pretty quiet on its website, only explaining that the company "is building a next generation security product to help businesses adopt and use popular cloud applications with confidence and ease!"  You can request a product evaluation, and will be asked, among other things, about how many cloud apps your organization is using

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CirroScope is looking to address the threat posed to enterprises' data by breaches involving cloud apps, whether self inflicted or not. It points to events such as breaches of Evernote and Dropbox. But it also wants to help monitor your data, via a service, to eliminate the inadvertent release of private information by enterprises into the public cloud, as has been documented on Amazon Web Services and other offerings. 

The company looks to be readying a series of what it currently calls CirroShields for various apps (BoxShield, SalesforceShield, GitShield, O365Shield, AwsShield, ZendeskShield, HerokuShield, DropboxShield, EvernoteShield and EchoSignShield), plus complementary dashboards.

[And yes, just when you thought there weren't any cloudy terms remaining for startups to use, along comes CirroScope, going all Latin on us with "cirro," a term for cloud. Though actually there is a 2010 data analytics startup called just plain old Cirro, too.)

CirroScope is led by co-founder Nishant Doshi, who spent eight-plus years at Symantec, most recently in anti-malware development and spearheading new products in the areas of mobile and social network security, according to his LinkedIn profile.  Doshi, educated in electrical and electronics engineering at Syracuse University and the University of Mumbai, has been working on CirroScope since at least last September.

One claim to fame: Doshi discovered a critical privacy flaw in Facebook in 2011 that resulted in significant changes to the social network platform. 

Joining Doshi at CirroScope is CTO and co-founder Ryan MacArthur, who was on the agenda as a speaker in May at the CloudCon Expo & Conference in San Francisco. MacArthur, a self-described "security innovator" and security vulnerability expert, was a software engineer on the Symantec Intrusion Prevention Team back in 2008-2009, and more recently was with cyberintelligence firm iSight Partners, as a research director.

CirroScope is angel investor funded, showing up on AngelList, where Matt Conover, CTO and co-founder of CloudVolumes, is listed as a financial backer and company adviser. CirroScope appears to be in the market for experts in Python and Ruby on Rails, with job openings and internships available for those with such expertise. 

David Linthicum, senior vice president at Cloud Technology Partners, wasn't familiar with CirroScope but says the demand for cloud security is obviously on the rise. "As enterprises are building applications in the cloud, including leveraging PaaS to build them or traditional SaaS, security is always in the mix."  

Bob Brown tracks network research in his Alpha Doggs blog and Facebook page, as well on Twitter and Google +

This story, "CirroScope: Stealthy cloud security startup hatched by ex-Symantec teammates" was originally published by Network World.

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