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Press release: Dutch cybersecurity company, Guardey, raises 2.2 million euros to protect SMEs from cybercrime

Accessible cybersecurity

Rotterdam, October 18, 2022 – Startup Guardey offers SMEs cyber security software that ensures online security and privacy. Because of the market’s demand for accessible and affordable cybersecurity for small and medium-sized businesses the company was established. Most cybersecurity solutions in the market are aimed at large companies, while SMEs and freelancers are increasingly confronted with cyber attacks. Guardey has raised 2.2 million euros to develop and launch the software. The investment comes from a group of successful Dutch entrepreneurs and investors who see the need to offer smaller companies a simple solution to protect themselves against cybercrime. Guardey was developed by the team of GOOSE VPN, the first Dutch VPN for consumers, which appeared on the market in 2017 and now helps 120,000 users worldwide with a secure online connection.

More Dutch companies dealing with cybercrime

The number of Dutch companies dealing with cybercrime this year has increased. In 2021, the percentage of affected companies was still 29 percent, this year it rose to 45 percent. This is apparent from research by ABN AMRO. Erwin Gritter, tax specialist and investor in Guardey: “In my work, I speak to entrepreneurs every day who have not yet properly arranged their cybersecurity, even though there is an increasing chance that they will become a victim. Accessible cybersecurity for SMEs is essential to offer smaller companies good online protection. That’s why I decided to invest in Guardey.”

Accessible cybersecurity

“SMEs deserve the same cybersecurity as the big boys”

Cybercriminals are getting smarter and more collaborative. In addition, they take advantage of the fact that many SMBs and freelancers cannot afford an expensive security infrastructure or an experienced IT professional. Also, the shift to hybrid working leads to additional security risks. All this makes workers vulnerable to hacking. Joeri van de Watering, co-founder and CEO of Guardey: “Because of our experience with GOOSE VPN, we noticed that the current solutions in the market are too complex, difficult to implement, and do not make the workers more aware of security risks. That’s why we developed Guardey. We believe that SMEs and freelancers deserve the same cybersecurity as the big boys. Did you know that it takes an average of 280 days for a company to realize that they have been hacked? The hacker’s goal is to remain inconspicuous for as long as possible in order to do as much damage as possible. The longer it takes to realize you’ve been hacked, the greater the damage. Guardey continuously monitors for suspicious online behavior so that action can be taken immediately before major damage is done.”

How does it work?

Guardey is an app that encrypts the internet connection through a VPN, Virtual Private Network. A VPN creates a tunnel between the internet and the device. This tunnel is fully secured so that the privacy and anonymity of the user are guaranteed. The Guardey cyber alarm analyzes all traffic in the secure connection based on destination and behavior. Hazards are checked in real-time. When the alarm recognizes a threat, the user will receive a notification and take action. At Guardey, different subscriptions can help to solve the problem. A game element will soon be available in the app. Weekly challenges teach users how to recognize phishing emails and shady activities online so companies can become more resilient against cyber attacks.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is gamification?

Gamification is adding game elements into non-game environments, such as security awareness training, to increase participation and foster active learning.

What are the benefits of gamification in security awareness training?

Traditional security awareness training can often be dry and boring. With gamification, the complex subject matter is transformed into an engaging and memorable experience.

By integrating game elements such as challenges, quizzes and rewards, it incentivizes users to actively learn. This makes the training more enjoyable and fosters a sense of competition and achievement. This combination drives better retention and application of cyber security knowledge.

Why is it important to train security awareness on a weekly basis?

Research shows that up to 90% of the learnings from yearly or even quarterly training are forgotten within a few weeks. Guardey was built to keep its users aware of cyber threats 365 days a year. The game comes with short, weekly challenges that slowly builds up the user’s knowledge and eventually drives lasting behavior change.

Which topics are covered in Guardey’s security awareness game?

Guardey covers a wide array of topics to train users about all currently relevant cyber threats, put together in collaboration with ethical hackers and educationalists. The topics covered include phishing, remote work, password security, CEO fraud, ransomware, smishing, and much more.

How much time do the weekly challenges take?

Every challenge takes up to three minutes to complete.

Can I use Guardey to comply with the ISO27001, NIS2, and GDPR security awareness policies?

Yes. ISO27001, NIS2, and GDPR all require that all employees receive appropriate security awareness training. Guardey is always up-to-date with the latest cyber threats, policies, and procedures.

Is security awareness training important for all employees, or just specific roles?

Cybersecurity awareness training is crucial for all employees, not just specific roles. Every staff member can potentially be a target or an unwitting entry point for cyber attacks. Training helps create a security-focused culture and minimizes risks for the entire organization.

While certain roles may require specialized training, a foundational level of training should be accessible to everyone.

In which languages is Guardey available?

Guardey is available in English, Dutch, Italian, French, Spanish, German, Polish, Swedish and Danish.

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