Respond Software Automates SOC Analyst Decisions

Originally published in SecurityWeek on August 16, 2017 by Edward Kovacs.

Mountain View, Calif.-based Respond Software has emerged from stealth mode with a new product designed to automate the role of security analysts and $12 million in funding.

Founded by Mike Armistead, Robert Hipps and Chris Calvert, Respond Software develops solutions that aim to make security operations centers (SOCs) more efficient. The company’s goal is to create software that powers what it calls the “self-driving SOC.”

Respond Software

Respond Software’s first product, Respond Analyst, is designed to emulate the decision-making process of an experienced security analyst in an effort to address the problem of overwhelmed SOC staff and shortage of skilled personnel.

According to the company, when put to work in a large enterprise, its product managed to do the work of 26 full-time SOC analysts that process 75 events per hour (based on industry-average productivity data).

The product currently has two modules for network intrusion and compromised system incidents. Respond Analyst consumes data from a company’s existing security products and uses patent-pending Probabilistic Graphical Optimization (PGO) technology to conduct analytical checks and probabilistic scenario simulations to determine whether a potential incident should be escalated to incident response based on likelihood, extent and severity.

The system leverages human feedback from all Respond customers to continually improve its decision-making capabilities.

Respond Software has obtained $12 million in a series A funding round led by CRV and Foundation Capital, which brings the total since the company was founded last year to $15 million. Respond says market demand for the types of solutions it provides is high and expected to grow over the next few years.

“There could not be a more expert team to tackle transforming today’s reactive SOCs to the next generation – a true Security Response Center – much like autonomous vehicles are generating an entirely new ecosystem of capability in transportation,” said Max Gazor, general partner at CRV.

“It’s like having a million more trained analysts instantly at the ready. These days, every organization needs more security resources. With the Respond Software solution, they now have it in spades,” added Paul Holland, general partner at Foundation Capital.

The company’s advisors include Gerhard Eschelbeck, VP of security and privacy engineering at Google, Richard Seiersen, CISO and VP of trust at Twilio, and Izak Mutlu, former CISO of Salesforce.com.