In this Entrepreneur Spotlight we have put our focus on Trivalent, a leading provider of next generation data protection based in Annapolis, MD. We love to interview clients and other local entrepreneurs to make others aware of what is going on in the local business community. We took a few moments to interview Trivalent, to ask some questions and learn more about this fast-growing company.
1. Tell us a little bit about Trivalent. How you first got started and how you have grown since inception in 2010.
Trivalent first started in a small office in downtown Annapolis, Maryland with just a handful of employees. Since then, we’ve grown to over 30 team members and relocated to a larger, 17,000 sq. ft. facility on Admiral Cochran Dr. to allow for continued growth. Due to our strong performance in the defense sector, the company has grown 250 percent since 2014. We’ve also celebrated the hiring of new marketing management, brought together a well-rounded and experienced Board of Advisors, and secured strategic partnerships that have fueled Trivalent’s readiness to address the growing data security and privacy protection challenges of industries such as healthcare, credit card processing, public safety and critical infrastructure.
2. What excites you the most about being in the technology and data protection industry?
As economies continue to digitize, more and more data is created every day. This means that the data protection industry needs to be one step ahead of the game in addressing increasingly advanced hacks and threats across all industries. Trivalent’s approach to data protection is uniquely based on the premise that organizations will most likely be subject to a breach at some point. Our next generation data protection solution goes beyond traditional encryption by changing the properties of data through a non-deterministic shredding process and securely storing it on the file system of a device or in the cloud. This protection process, which we call “Data Alchemy”, protects data that is both in use and at rest, regardless of whether you’re connected to the internet. The transparency to the end-user is unprecedented and the protection works at run-time with no discernible latency, providing only the authorized user with file reconstruction as requested. For all others who attempt to use the data, an insider or a malicious attacker, the file will be completely useless. In addition to leading the change in innovation and problem solving, which this industry requires a great deal of, it’s awesome to be working with Trivalent’s highly talented team in Annapolis. As a Maryland boy, I went to school here and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to build a company in this area. The state has tremendous support for helping businesses grow, especially in Cyber. I’m very proud to see local technology companies like Trivalent continue to make innovative strides.
3. What has been the biggest challenge in this industry?
Our biggest hurdle has been remaining patient while we take the time to make a deep development investment in the product. However, the strength of security, ease of deployment and scalability that we have achieved was worth the wait. We recently announced our NSA-approved data security is now available for commercial markets. In addition to growing our defense sector, we are eager to introduce our Trivalent Data Protection Platform™ to high risk and highly regulated sectors such as healthcare, financial service, government and public safety. Data is an organization’s most valuable resource, so business leaders must adopt a defense-in-depth data security strategy by using a layered approach. Trivalent’s next generation data protection can easily be implemented in legacy and modern IT environments and is the last line of defense.
4. What are some key milestones you hope to achieve this year?
In December of this year, Trivalent will celebrate its seven year anniversary – which is a huge milestone for myself and Rick Bueno, Trivalent’s co-founder and chief strategy officer. In addition to bringing on new employees, we’ll also be making announcements about new customers, partners, products, optimization in new commercial industries and growing our business footprint globally.
5. Tell us about your newest product, Trivalent Protect?
Trivalent Protect delivers NSA-approved data protection against ongoing high-impact breaches that result in data loss and alleviates non-compliance penalties. Through a unique approach called Data Alchemy™, the properties of sensitive and regulated data are transformed to make it completely unusable to unauthorized actors. Trivalent Protect supports Windows 7, 8 and 10. For IT administrators, it offers centralized and flexible configuration management with options to select a file type and application date. A multitude of industries such as healthcare, payment processing, utilities, public safety, defense and critical infrastructure can now effectively protect and control the use of their data when other security layers are circumvented.
6. What advice would you offer other entrepreneurs starting out today?
Approach your new business with a very deliberate strategy. Avoid the pitfalls of trying to tackle every industry you hope to reach right off the bat, and instead focus your efforts on solving problems and bettering your offerings in one particular industry. In the beginning, the Trivalent team focused specifically on the government defense sector. We did so in a way that wasn’t service-based, but rather allowed us to build a commercially available product down the line. As our first customers, we worked with the government to give them top secret data protection at a low price point. Trivalent came in with a very simple message in terms of how we can solve an existing problem.