To Protect Personal Computers, Cybersecurity Startup Gets Under the Operating System

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On Thursday, Tel Aviv-based Hysolate announced it raised $8 million in fundingץ

Hysolate Ltd., an Israel-based cybersecurity startup, announced Thursday it has raised $8 million from former Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s venture firm Innovation Endeavors, and Team8, a cybersecurity-focused startup foundry.

Hysolate’s technology protects computer networks against cyber attacks by running all activity on a user’s computer through two separate operating systems, one for regular internet use, and one for sensitive operations. A user can access the internet freely without providing would-be attacks a route into the company’s network. Switching between operating systems happens automatically and behind the scenes without the user ever noticing.

Calling this concept a “virtual air gap,” Hysolate draws inspiration from military and government agencies that keep sensitive networks physically disconnected from the internet.

Many cybersecurity solutions are based on protecting against attacks that exploit weaknesses in operating systems. Hysolate says that instead of plugging holes in Windows, it keeps cyber attackers confined to the one, unlocked operating system.

“40 million lines of code on Windows create endless vulnerabilities. We want to take the operating system out of the equation,” said Hysolate CEO Tal Zamir in a phone interview with Calcalist Wednesday.

Founded by Mr. Zamir and Dan Dinnar, Hysolate employs 25 people in its offices in Tel Aviv and New York. Mr. Dinnar served as CEO of HexaTier, which was acquired by Huawei for $42 million in 2016. Mr. Zamir was the head of research and development at Wanova, which was acquired by VMware in 2012 in a deal worth $100 million.