Attacks on IT infrastructure seem to become more and more sophisticated and the countermeasures have to keep track with those developments but often still depend on outdated technologies.
ESA BIC Bavaria incubatee qbound solves this problem with its holistic zero-trust identity and access management solution by combining the three technologies blockchain, machine learning, and software-defined perimeters. This novel approach overcomes the challenges of today’s solutions and allows qbound to provide fine-grained, tamper-proof access management. In many cases of data theft, previous solutions have not been able to trace which data has been stolen at all and what consequences this has (e.g. where know-how has flowed unjustifiably), since log files have been manipulated and deleted.
qbound was initiated by the three co-founders André Schweizer, Artur Rösch and Sven Radszuwill and has been incubated in the ESA BIC Bavaria since 2020.
Pia Feurstein, ESA BIC Bavaria Junior Project Manager at AZO, interviews Dr. André Schweizer (AS), Managing Director of qbound.
PF: Please give us a sneak peek of your product and the team behind it.
AS: Cyber security is one of the biggest challenges of our society – this is becoming clear every day. To protect organisations, we at qbound provide the next generation of cyber security. Our zero-trust access management solution makes it possible to gain full transparency for access rights and data flows. We enable companies to leverage new technological developments such as the cloud and IoT with the highest security.
PF: What has been your company’s biggest challenge so far?
AS: Well, I think as a startup you have to deal with multiple challenges at the same time: fast product development, market entry barriers, funding, finding great team members, etc. So, I think, really dealing with the combination of all these multifaceted challenges represents the biggest challenge for us (and many other young companies).
PF: Can you explain the three main ingredients of your recipe for success?
AS: We are still at an early stage of our journey. So, I can only mention the ones that have helped pave our way so far: consistent hard work, endurance, and also a little luck (e.g. to meet the right people at the right times). In addition, I think it is very important to build up trust in the company and the provided solution. Here, pilot projects and close collaboration with pilot customers can be a great way to do this.
PF: Did the recent Covid-19 outbreak have any effects on your business and/or are you expecting any impacts in the future?
AS: Over the last few months, we have certainly experienced that more and more processes, meetings and also sales channels have shifted to primarily digital activities. On the one hand, this has a positive effect on us as a company, since we help organisations to secure their digitisation journey and their digital services. On the other hand, we also experienced that through the Covid-19 outbreak a lot of company budgets have been cut or projects have been postponed.
PF: What do you expect from ESA BIC Bavaria and how do you think the initiative and its network will help you to kick-start your business case?
AS: We are currently focusing on integrating a new authentication feature into our solution. That component is designed to use satellite-based location services as an additional authentication factor to further increase the security level of our customers. ESA BIC Bavaria is the perfect environment to make this step happen, since we benefit from the direct contact to ESA experts and partners.
PF: What do you think to benefit from the DLR support?
AS: We benefit from the huge DLR experience in utilising space technology within digital services. So, it is a great benefit for us to work closely with the researchers and experts from DLR. In addition, it is very helpful to discuss new ideas and product features with the DLR tech team.
PF: Let’s reach for the stars – what is going to happen in qbound’s future?
AS: We at qbound are convinced that we need to rethink cyber security to solve the issue of cyber crime. We thus utilise the latest technologies such as software-defined perimeter, blockchain, and machine learning to provide a new level of security with our zero-trust solution. With our innovative, highly competitive, and scalable solution, we are currently running multiple projects with clients from various industries. Hence, we already provide our security solution for multiple use cases in the cloud and IoT space. We focus on making the world a more secure place and establishing ourselves as a leading-edge cyber security provider.
Want to find out more about qbound? Get in contact with the founders via e-mail. Stay tuned for upcoming interviews with more ESA BIC Bavaria innovators on our AZO Blog.