Data privacy start-up closes $1.05m seed funding round

Robert Pisarczyk, Oblivious AI
Robert Pisarczyk, Oblivious AI

Oblivious AI to take privacy enhancing technology global

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1 September 2021 | 0

Oblivious AI, an Irish data privacy start-up, has secured $1.05 million in an initial seed funding round with investors including Atlantic Bridge, Act Venture Capital, Hustle Fund and a group of angel investors.

Oblivious AI has developed privacy enhancing technologies (PETs) to help organisations keep sensitive data safe while creating insight opportunities for the data owners.

The NovaUCD-headquartered company, co-founded in 2020 by Robert Pisarczyk and Jack Fitzsimons, will use the funding to build out its core team, further develop its initial product offering, and continue to work closely with its early customer base. The company, which currently has a team of eight, aims to launch its technology to developers globally by the end of 2021.

 

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Oblivious’ PETs allow companies, governments and international organisations to process data without having direct access to the underlying sensitive information, reducing risk from cyberattacks while also creating new insight opportunities for data owners.

Pisarczyk said: “A 2015 study by consulting firm McKinsey suggested that only 1% of the world’s data is analysed and used for collaborative purposes. PETs provide a phenomenal opportunity to unlock the potential of these vast reserves of unused data.

“Given such opportunities tech-giants such as Intel, Amazon, and Microsoft have poured hundreds of millions into developing PETs, building the underlying infrastructure that enables organisations to implement privacy safeguards at scale. However a lack of tooling means the technologies have been difficult to apply in practice and developers struggle to integrate privacy considerations into simple applications, such as web-based healthcare applications.

“Our technology allows organisations to collaborate on sensitive data while maintaining the strictest legal, moral and ethical safeguards and provides developers with tools that they can launch with one-click from their cloud environment, significantly reducing the barrier of entry to PETs.”

He continued: “It’s terrific to have the likes of Atlantic Bridge, Act Venture Capital, Hustle Fund and our angel investors join us on our mission, as they bring far more than just their funding to the table. They are each established investors with invaluable institutional knowledge that we believe will help Oblivious AI grow into a strong and long-lasting company.”

“With funding in place, our main goal is to continue to build a great team, continue to support our existing clients and publicly launch our tools for all developers to use in the coming months. We are entering into a number of new partnerships and have the best early-access users we could imagine, so it will be an exciting year ahead.”

The Oblivious team have collaborated with organisations such as the United Nations, the University of Oxford and ETH Zurich.

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