10 Cloud Access Security Brokers Partners Should Watch

Startups, Big Vendors Offer Partners A Range Of Options

The Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) market is one of the hottest growing areas in cloud security, expected to reach $7.51 billion by 2020, up from $3.34 billion in 2015, according to research firm Markets and Markets. CASBs act as intermediaries between end users and cloud applications, providing platforms with added security benefits through APIs or proxies. Those benefits include visibility and risk assessment, compliance, data security and threat protection, according to Gartner's definition of the market.

The market is starting to gain a lot of attention from big-name vendors, prompting consolidation in recent months. For partners, the market means an opportunity for added security controls over cloud applications, easier security management and an additional revenue steam.

Here are 10 CASB vendors that partners should look at if they're thinking about diving into the market.

Blue Coat Systems

CEO: Greg Clark

Blue Coat Systems, which this week agreed to be acquired by Symantec for $4.56 billion, has been one of the most acquisitive player in the CASB market, picking up two companies in the space within the last year. In July 2015, Blue Coat acquired Perspecsys, an enterprise cloud data protection startup, with a solution that uses data tokenization and encryption to protect cloud applications. Four months later, the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company added to that with the acquisition of Elastica, a cloud security company with capabilities around threat scoring, use and endpoint behavior modeling, natural language-based data loss prevention and cloud application analysis for the security operations center. Cloud access security brokering is a key strategic play for Blue Coat, president and COO Michael Fey said at the time, calling it a "massive" opportunity.

Skyhigh Networks

CEO: Rajiv Gupta

Skyhigh Networks is one of the largest pure-play CASB vendors left standing after a year of consolidation. The company, based in Campbell, Calif., provides visibility, threat detection and policy enforcement capabilities to secure cloud applications. Skyhigh has been expanding its offerings in recent months, launching a Cloud Technology Partner Program in February to grow its base of vendor integrations and landing a patent for securing mobile-to-cloud traffic interactions, something CEO Rajiv Gupta said would be a key milestone for the company in offering unfettered compliant and secure mobile-to-cloud interactions.


CEO: Sanjay Beri

Based in Los Altos, Calif., Netskope offers a cloud access security brokerage solution that the company says differentiates itself by providing full visibility into cloud app usage and data. Netskope provides capabilities for advanced enterprise data loss prevention, policy management, threat protection and a variety of deployment options to fit any environment. Investors have taken notice of the Netskope solution, having funneled $75 million in Series D funding into the startup in September of last year. That brought the company's total funding raised to $130 million.


CEO: Gil Zimmermann

CloudLock, founded in 2011 under the name Aprigo, focuses on offering what it calls a cloud-native CASB and cloud cybersecurity platform, the Cloud Security Fabric, from which partners and customers can deliver and orchestrate security across a variety of applications and cloud infrastructures. Those security capabilities include advanced cloud analytics, community intelligence, cloud risk insight and cybersecurity ecosystem orchestration. The cloud-native approach is much more effective, the company says, because it allows a company to leverage its existing cloud security investments instead of using APIs and proxies for on premise solutions.

Microsoft Adallom

CEO: Satya Nadella

Microsoft was another big-name vendor to dive into the CASB market in 2015, announcing the acquisition of Adallom in September. The Israeli cloud access security brokerage startup has a particular focus on policy enforcement, capabilities that add extra security to Microsoft Active Directory and Azure Active Directory, the company said in a blog post at the time. The solution also complements Office 365, the Enterprise Mobility Suite and Microsoft Advanced Threat Analytics, the company said.


CEO: Pravin Kothari

CipherCloud, based in San Jose, Calif., helps clients boost their visibility and data protection in the cloud with a cloud access security brokerage solution that provides encryption, tokenization and DLP for data in cloud-based services. The company landed $50 million in venture capital funding in November 2014. Since then, it has expanded its ecosystem with new vendor partnerships, solutions and its acquisition of cloud security analytics company Anicut Systems.


CEO: Jay Chaudhry

Based in San Jose, Calif., Zscaler offers a cloud security solution that preserves the user experience, while boosting web and application security with a cloud-based firewall proxy architecture that acts as a single virtual proxy to the web. This security-as-a-service approach helps drive better web, application, cloud and mobile security for customers. The solution can act as a CASB between users and cloud applications, inspecting traffic for malware and threats, as well as providing secure access capabilities.


CEO: Anthony Bettencourt

Among its wide portfolio of solutions, Imperva offers Skyfence Cloud Gateway, a cloud access security brokerage solution to provide security capabilities around cloud applications. Those capabilities include visibility and control over cloud services, discovery of shadow IT, identification of gaps in identity security and compliance, implementation of data protection, and analysis of user activity and insider threats. Imperva offers tailored solutions for securing key business applications, including Office 365, OneDrive, Amazon Web Services, Salesforce, Box, Dropbox, Google Apps, Microsoft Azure, Netsuite, Workday and Zendesk.


CEO: Nat Kausik

One of the newer entrants into the CASB market in 2013, Bitglass offers a cloud access security brokerage solution that helps businesses secure their applications and mobile devices, and enforce data security policies. The company said it sets itself apart by being agent-less, providing end-to-end data security and visibility into cloud environments, as well as controlling access to data. The company also positions its product as a way an organization can enhance mobile security without having to invest in a mobile device management solution.

Palo Alto Networks Aperture

CEO: Mark McLaughlin

Palo Alto Networks dove into the cloud access security broker space in May 2015 with its acquisition of CirroSecure, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company that delivers a tool to manage and secure SaaS applications by providing deep visibility into the application activity, as well as data analytics for policy enforcement and quarantining violations. In particular, CirroSecure focuses on providing security visibility and analytics into a particular subset of those applications that are sanctioned by IT, such as Salesforce.com and Office 365. Palo Alto Networks used the acquisition to launch its Aperture solution in September 2015.