Tuesday 12 December 2017

Sedicii graphs anti-hacking technology

Rob Leslie
Rob Leslie

Company: Sedicii

What it does: mobile and online security

Founders: Rob Leslie, Richard Coady

Hacking attacks are rife. Whether it is global attacks such as those on Sony, Target or eBay, or local ones such as Ireland's Loyaltybuild, keeping data secure has never been trickier.

One acclaimed Waterford-based start-up thinks it has come up with the answer. It has developed a system that allows organisations to verify user details - including passwords and other sensitive information - without having that data stored on its own servers. In other words, if the company is hacked, the hacker won't get any customer information because there's none stored there.

The system works by constructing a 'graph' between data held by the user (such as a password) and a correct authentication signal acceptable to the company. Millions of pieces of data make up this graph, meaning that the chances of replicating it - even with advanced hacking technical firepower - are very small.

"Banking is a good example," said Rob Leslie, pictured, co-founder of the company. "You might be trying to log in to your mobile banking. But how does the bank know that it's you and not your friend or a stranger? Right now, it's just down to your password entry. But it could be much more, using a more developed idea of unique authentication. For example, it could be a password combined with the IMEI [unique phone code] of a device or a geolocation. Or it could even be biometric. This way, you're turning a pure password into what we call a contextual password."

Despite being in 'pre-revenue' mode, the firm has won awards all over Europe for its technology and is currently working with several large companies, including one of Europe's largest telecoms operators to developing payment authentication methods for the telecom firm's customers.

Leslie said that he has funded the operation himself to date, but will soon be open to funding approaches. "We have two people in Waterford and one in London," he said. "We're on the cusp of signing some really big customers. Our next challenge is funding."

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