Security & Fraud

NYC Startup Ethyca Raises $4.2M For GDPR Compliance Solution


A New York-based data privacy software startup co-founded by Ireland’s Cillian Kieran has raised $4.2 million in seed funding.

The software aims to automate data privacy and make it easier to meet the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance obligations, TechCrunch reports.

Designed to be developer-friendly, the platform is built as an application programming interface (API) and allows privacy to be integrated at an early stage. Data privacy law and regulations were initiated in Europe over a year ago, but still presents compliance challenges for many companies. 

The seed funding was led by IA Ventures and Founder Collective with Table Management, Sinai Ventures, Cheddar Founder Jon Steinberg and Moat Co-Founder and CEO Jonah Goodhart also participating.

“These solutions don’t actually solve the issue from an infrastructure point of view. I think that’s the distinction. You can go and use the consultants, or you can use a control panel that tells you what you need to do,” Kieran said to TechCrunch. “But ultimately, at some point, you’re either going to have to build or deploy code that fixes some issues or indeed manually manage or remediate those [issues]. Ethyca is designed for that and takes away those risks because it is managing privacy by design at the infrastructure level.” 

Kieran is the previous founder of the Dublin-based digital and marketing agency CKSK as well as a New York-based consultancy, BrandCommerce.

GDPR is just the beginning of the privacy regulations, with upcoming laws in California and other states as well as Australia, Brazil and Japan.

Since GDPR was initiated in May 2018, there have been $62.6 million in fines along with 200,000 investigations into breaches. Some 96 percent of banks are still reliant on legacy methods for customer authentication. 

Financial institutions, merchants and a host of other organizations around the world are trying to make sense of the global impacts of GDPR as the Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2) deadline nears. The larger points of both regulatory regimes are to build a better digital economy.


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