Nov 11, 2020

JumpCloud raises $75mn for secure cloud directory

JumpCloud
Cloud
Startup
William Smith
2 min
Denver, Colorado-based JumpCloud allows IT teams to manage user identities securely and connect them to resources in the cloud
Denver, Colorado-based JumpCloud allows IT teams to manage user identities securely and connect them to resources in the cloud...

Denver, Colorado-based JumpCloud allows IT teams to manage user identities securely and connect them to resources in the cloud.

The company operates a cloud directory platform that gives control over user access from devices in any location, for increased security. It says its solution is used by more than 100,000 organisations, many of them using it for free by virtue of its software as a service (SaaS) model. Paying customers include GoFundMe, Grab and Foursquare. 

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic creating a mass uptake in cloud technology, the company has found new impetus as IT teams seek to connect remote users to the resources they need while remaining secure.

Since its foundation in 2012, the company has raised almost $167mn. Its latest Series E, announced yesterday, saw the company raise $75mn from lead investor BlackRock, alongside General Atlantic, who have invested previously.

In a press release, Rajat Bhargava, CEO and co-founder, said: “Our market opportunity is exploding as organizations realize legacy domain based approaches to IT infrastructure have become barriers to securely getting work done. JumpCloud offers a solution that is both comprehensive and simple – making it easier for IT to adopt a zero trust access model without infringing on employees' ability to do their jobs. With this investment, we will continue our focus on product-led growth, while scaling the business to meet the needs of users and customers around the world.”

The company said it would use the funding to expand product development, as well as invest in marketing and sales globally.

“JumpCloud is filling a critical need in the market as companies grapple with the complexity of a remote workforce, and we are thrilled to be leading this round to help further accelerate the company’s success,” said William Abecassis, head of Innovation Capital at BlackRock.

(Image: JumpCloud)

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Jun 24, 2021

Legend: John McAfee

McAfee
Cybersecurity
Intel
2 min
A controversial figure, John McAfee is credited with starting an entire technology industry around cybersecurity

John McAfee is credited with starting the entire cybersecurity industry. In 1987, he set up McAfee Associates and released VirusScan. Previous antivirus programs had been released, but McAfee’s was the first with mass appeal and was soon a day zero (or at least day one) installation for Windows users as well as corporate clients.

McAfee: divisive

But McAfee was also a hugely divisive character. He dismissed his own software, claimed he never used it, and rejoiced when Intel bought McAfee and took his name off “the worst software on the planet.” He was anti-tax, pro-drugs, anti-war and pro-free trade. He was also a tireless crusader for cyber awareness, and set up a political party called the Cyber Party in order to make a bid for the office of president of the US.

“I am now everlastingly grateful to Intel for freeing me from this terrible association with the worst software on the planet”

McAfee: born in the UK

McAfee was born in Gloucestershire, UK, but moved to Salem, Virginia, where his American father (his mother was English) shot himself when McAfee was 15. McAfee worked at NASA, Univac, Xerox, Computer Sciences Corporation, Booz Allen Hamilton and Lockheed. It was while working at the latter he was given a copy of Brain, the first computer virus for PC, and began to engineer a defence.

McAfee: controversy

Controversy dogged McAfee. He was implicated as a ‘person of interest’ in the search for a neighbour who had been shot. He married a prostitute. He claimed a cocaine baron was writing his biography. He was arrested for possession of an unlicensed weapon and for manufacturing drugs in Belize (later released without charge). There were various other arrests (mainly weapons related) but not much would stick until McAfee’s anti-tax stance caught up with him. 

McAfee: arrest

He fled the US as tax authorities turned up the heat on at least four years of non payment of tax and was arrested (again) in Spain in October 2020 at the behest of the US Department of Justice. Charges for fraudulently promoting cryptocurrencies were soon added and he was formally indicted in March 2021. In June 2021, the Spanish National Court authorised McAfee’s extradition to the US, and McAfee was found dead in his cell just hours later in what is widely believed to be a suicide.

McAfee: death

Even in death, McAfee courted controversy, having announced that if he was ever found to have committed suicide, it would mean he had been murdered. A slew of conspiracy theories mushroomed in the hours after his death was announced. It’s just what he would have wanted.

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