December 23, 2021
From our R&D headquarters in San Sebastián, Spain

“A New Hope”

2021 has been a remarkable year for everyone around the world, and the same holds true for the team at CounterCraft. In the midst of the personal and societal difficulties and tragic consequences of the COVID pandemic, we have found some glimmers of positivity. We are really pleased to share that 2021 has been an outstanding year for CounterCraft. It gives us great encouragement to see the project that we started in 2015 scale into an amazing team, an incredible technology and a growing group of supportive customers.

This year, CounterCraft has grown more than 350%. We have left our “start-up” status behind and are heading into “scale-up” territory. 2022 will be a year for massive growth and investment into our team as the market continues to affirm our decision to build a platform for deception-based approach cyber defense. Growth is tough, but we have laid the solid foundations necessary for success.

Our vision remains relevant and virtually unchanged. Threat intel is broken: too little arrives too late. The vicious cycle of cleaning up incidents only to be attacked again is never broken. A defensible perimeter is a theory—not a reality. Zero trust is the only way forward. We saw all this coming and decided to build a cyber deception platform to “Detect Threats, Collect Tailored Threat Intel, and Engage with Adversaries” to elicit deeper intel and gain time to respond. And now the market is responding.

  • Direct enquiries about our solution are up by 700%.
  • Analyst enquiries about deception are up 300%.
  • Numerous reports on deception tools have been published in 2021 (all of them featuring CounterCraft).

Forward-leaning cyber defense teams are building capability to investigate and respond to threats with deception techniques, and they are researching the tools to support them.

The analyst reports on deception tools this year are plentiful, and CounterCraft features as a leader in all of them. We are proud to support and amplify the work of key analysts: KuppingerColeGigaOm RadarIDG Security Priorities (which shows 72% of companies are evaluating the use of deception), and, of course, Gartner! This year Gartner named CounterCraft as a cool vendor and hired a dedicated deception expert analyst: Nahim Fazal. We recommend reaching out to him as he is a goldmine of information in this space.

One of the biggest developments in 2021 was CounterCraft’s arrival in the USA with a team led by Amyn Gilani, and supported by Luke , Noel, Nicole, Will and Shunta. We can’t express how enthusiastic we are about the experience and technical insight that this team has. We are so lucky to count on practitioners and experts in the cyber field, with many members having done active service for their country.

Maria Vello and Kevin Rogers have joined Elias Ladopulous as strategic advisors bringing their wealth of understanding about the financial and federal cyber areas to add to the already technical and business focused insights that Elias brings. This strategic advisory board is fundamental in supporting our vision, and we are delighted to have them on board.

On the product side, we debuted ActiveBehavior, the world’s first automation system for deception environments. ActiveBehavior generates pocket lint and pattern-of-life behavior, that, as time goes by, makes our environments look enticing (and not dusty and dead). For early next year, we are working on a skunk works project to give back unique threat intel to the community. You can see some early output herehere and here, which was rapidly taken up and retweeted by our peers. We are really looking forward to coming to fruition. Alone we can accomplish nothing—we have to work together. In 2022, let’s try and make the internet a safer place, using deception-based techniques.

We started this letter with “a new hope”, because we view our approach as a chance to disrupt the traditional, almost Empire-like, approaches to cyber defense. Years of hard work creating something is reaching critical mass. In 2022, we will get our valuable technology into the hands of more clients than ever before, improving safety for everyone. A huge thanks to the clients that trusted in our vision and our team that executed on it—without you we couldn’t have gotten this far.

Looking forward to 2022,

David Barroso, Dan Brett and Fernando Braquehais
Founders of CounterCraft