Zscaler To Buy Startup Cloudneeti To Protect Public Cloud Data

‘Cloudneeti was built in the cloud for the cloud, which is why Zscaler is such an exciting technological and cultural fit for the team,’ says Cloudneeti Founder and CEO Gururaj Pandurangi.


Zscaler has agreed to purchase cloud security posture management startup Cloudneeti to prevent and remediate application misconfigurations in the cloud.

The San Jose, Calif.-based cloud security company said the proposed acquisition of Redmond, Wash.-based Cloudneeti will extend Zscaler’s data protection for Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications into public cloud workloads. SaaS, Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) misconfigurations are a leading cause of data breaches and compliance violations in cloud applications.

“Whether caused by SaaS applications being configured incorrectly or a developer accidentally misconfiguring a new public cloud application, these preventable data protection lapses are behind some of the biggest breaches in history,” Zscaler Chairman and CEO Jay Chaudhry said in a statement.

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Terms of the deal, which is expected to close by the end of this month, weren’t disclosed, and Zscaler didn’t immediately respond to a request for additional comment. Zscaler’s stock is down $0.62 (0.95 percent) to $64.31 in trading Thursday morning.

Cloudneeti was founded in 2017 and employs 40 people, up from 31 employees a year ago, according to LinkedIn. The company works with managed service providers and risk advisors to deliver cloud security assessments, DevSecOps, and security and compliance assurance in the cloud, according to Cloudneeti’s website.

“Pravin [Kulkarni] and I founded Cloudneeti with a vision to end breaches and compliance violations that are caused by entirely preventable misconfigurations as applications move to the cloud,” Cloudneeti Founder and CEO Gururaj Pandurangi said in a statement. “Cloudneeti was built in the cloud for the cloud, which is why Zscaler is such an exciting technological and cultural fit for the team.”

Cloudneeti provides clients with data protection and exposure prevention across locations, users and application types to ensure consistent and comprehensive data loss prevention in compliance with regulations like GDPR, according to Zscaler. The company automates remediation by following industry and organizationally defined policies to ensure cloud applications aren’t vulnerable to outside threats.

The Cloudneeti platform provides compliance visibility and violation mitigation across SaaS applications like Microsoft Office 365 as well as public cloud platforms like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, Zscaler said. This ensures government laws and industry regulations are being followed, according to Zscaler.

Cloudneeti’s expertise strengthens the data protection capabilities of Zscaler Internet Access as well as the company’s cloud access security broker (CASB). The application protection capabilities in Zscaler Private Access will be strengthen by Cloudneeti’s ability to have developers to find and automatically correct misconfigured applications and compliance violations in cloud service provider environments.

The Cloudneeti deal is Zscaler’s third acquisition in the past 20 months. The company in August 2018 purchased the development team and artificial intelligence and machine-learning technology of TrustPath. TrustPath had developed algorithms to identify new threats, resulting in enhanced security efficacy and accelerated incident response.

Nine months later, Zscaler got into the browser isolation space with the $13 million buy of Appsulate to provide users with secure access to web-based applications and content by rendering safe pixels to the browser, protecting corporate endpoints from security concerns. Browser isolation is especially suited for security sensitive verticals such as financial services and defense, according to Zscaler.

Zscaler rolled out a new partner program in February which gives solution providers more self-service content and dedicated support. As a result, the company’s channel account managers have gone from being responsible for between 20 and 30 solution providers to no more than four partners, allowing them to provide more white-glove service, channel chief Al Caravelli told CRN at the time.