As founders of a Web security software company go, these two definitely have some street cred. Laura Mather and Mike Eynon were senior fraud prevention specialists at eBay and PayPal, two of the most targeted brands on the Internet. When a pair like this decide to build a Website security product designed to detect and prevent fraud perpetrated via Website attacks, the market ought to take notice. "They're industry veterans...and they knew what they needed to help them, so they engineered a solution that they needed," says Bill Bradway, managing director at Bradway Research. "They're very well attuned to the pain that the fraud prevention teams have."
Mather and Eynon launched Silver Tail Systems in January 2008, and this spring released an enterprise-class software product that sits in the data center and monitors all Website traffic, looking for the behavioral abnormalities that Silver Tail's come to know indicate fraud. "The beauty of Website traffic is 99 percent of it is legitimate traffic," Mather says. "And our system has a really clear identifier of what normal traffic looks like."
When abnormal traffic begins to hit a Website, Silver Tail Forensics identifies the new, bad behaviors and sends an alert to the fraud team. Silver Tail's Mitigation product gives responders tools to disrupt the attack in real time by changing the business logic flows. Silver Tail bills itself as one of the only products on the market that can disrupt "man-in-the-browser" attacks and protect against business logic abuse.
The company is "pre-revenue" with $2.1 million in venture funding. Its first customer is expected to be live in June, Mather says, but she's mum on who that is. BTN's money is on Bank of America as the first deployment, given that Mather has worked closely with BofA's David Shroyer at the Anti-Phishing Working Group on an industry-wide initiative to educate bank customers about phishing.
Given Bank of America's position as the largest retail bank in the country, it'd be great if it was an early Silver Tail customer - Silver Tail plans to federate its findings about attacks, allowing each of its customers to benefit from the experience of others. This business model jibes well with Mather's belief, shared by Shroyer, svp of online security and enrollment at Bank of America, that online fraud prevention is not an area of competitive advantage.