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Innovation drives growth at ReliaQuest

Margie Manning

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ReliaQuest, a Tampa technology firm that helps big companies manage their IT security, has developed a new platform that makes it easier for its clients to understand and act on potential cybersecurity threats.

The platform, GreyMatter, automates what ReliaQuest has been doing in its own security center operations, said Brian Murphy, CEO.

Brian Murphy

It’s a major development from a rapidly growing company that has brought jobs and skills training to the Tampa Bay area. ReliaQuest, founded by Murphy in 2007 and with about 400 employees in Tampa, Las Vegas and Dublin, Ireland, has committed $1 million to fund the ReliaQuest Cybersecurity Labs at the USF Muma College of Business, an extension of its own internal training program. The company has hired 110 people year to date, and expects to hire a total of 200 people this year. The company doesn’t release revenue, but Murphy said last year ReliaQuest had 67 percent year-over-year revenue growth and it’s on track for 72 percent growth this year.

“It takes innovation like GreyMatter to drive that growth,” Murphy said.

The platform was announced a few months after ReliaQuest commissioned a study from IT research firm 451 Research, that looked at the difficulties big companies face when they add new technologies. More than one in four of the companies surveyed, or 28 percent, said they had troubled getting security products to work together. About 43 percent of the companies reported “alert fatigue,” or being so overwhelmed with alerts from their security products that they were unable to act on about 25 percent of those alerts.

GreyMatter addresses those issues by connecting the various technologies, processes and people at big companies.

“It’s a one-stop way to pull all the information the company already has together,” Murphy said. “Most of the time what you see in security or in technology is that these big corporations, these Fortune 1000 companies, are being told to remove the thing you bought over there and replace it with the thing I want you to buy over here. What we’ve learned is that it’s not about replacing something. It’s about getting all the things they own to work better together. GreyMatter does that.”

One key task GreyMatter accomplishes is making sure the security teams at big companies get “visibility,” or insight into the activities of IT assets and users, as well as the infrastructure that detects and responds to security incidents in a timely manner.

“We want to remove the information that we know our people and our customers don’t need. That just gets in the way. We want to raise up the information we do want them looking at,” Murphy said.

GreyMatter combines human knowledge with automation to accomplish that. “Since 2012, we’ve been working to automate in the background to help our teams and our customers see more and be able to trust the information they’re seeing. GreyMatter is the culmination of all of those automations in one place,” Murphy said.

A beta version of the technology rolled out late last year and early this year. Threat detection improved four-fold in less than 90 days and cut system downtime by 98 percent, according to a news release from ReliaQuest.

The user interface is in place now at about 15 to 20 percent of ReliaQuest’s existing customers, but all of the customers are getting the benefit of GreyMatter now, Murphy said.

“It wasn’t something extra we had to go install. It’s a way that we could get visibility into their data and enhance their analytics,” he said. “Over the course of the next six months, they will actually be able to do automated hunt campaigns and take automated actions using the GreyMatter user interface, but today they’re all getting the benefit of GreyMatter in their environment as we work through their quarterly plans and updates.”

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