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Big Brother security tech gets $20m

Skyhigh Networks takes VC cash to patrol corporate networks

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Skyhigh Networks has trousered $20m from VC firms keen on the security company's tech for snooping on corporate networks and locking down banned apps.

The $20 megabuck Series E investment round was led by Sequoia Capital along with pre-existing investors Greylock Partners, the company announced on Tuesday.

By scanning networking traffic from logs from firewalls, proxies, and web security gateways, the company's tech can sniff out network traffic that matches up with any of its 2,000 or so profiled cloud apps. It can then rank the security of them via 30 different factors and even let admins shut access to those apps that may warrant security concerns.

In the past Skyhigh told us that one of its customers found upon installing the agent-based snooping technology that it was using 46 cloud storage services within its own organization.

To coincide with the funding Skyhigh announced its 30-in-30 challenge, which guarantees that the company's tech will "uncover "at least 30 unknown cloud services in use by their organization in 30 minutes".

This round of funding brings the company's total investment to date to $26m. The money will go on expanding the company's engineering teams in Cupertino, USA, and Banaglore, India, and hiring people for sales and marketing roles in US, Europe and Asia.

The company is currently at 62 employees and hopes be at 100 by close of 2013 and 200 by 2014, Skyhigh Networks' chief executive Rajiv Gupta told us. "Hiring will be approximately evenly split across sales, marketing, and engineering," he said.

As for the company's technology, the $20m will go on a broad swathe of improvements to its discovery, analysis and control strands. The $20m investing comes alongside Blue Coat gobbling network packet surveillance firm Solera Networks, whose tech offers a more granular traffic-view of security rather than app-view. ®

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