Distil Networks Raises $21M to Block Bots From Wrecking the Web

August 2, 2016

Arlington-based cybersecurity startup Distil Networks has closed a $21 million Series C funding round barely more than year after raising the same amount for its Series B funding.

"It was opportunistic, Distil co-founder and CEO Rami Essaid told DC Inno in an interview. "We weren't in a hurry and we didn't need the cash, but in February everyone was getting cold in venture funding so we took up the offer."

Distil specializes in blocking malicious automated attacks on company servers. These bot attacks are capable of helping criminals steal vital information, commit identity theft and and hamstring the processing speed of major companies and organizations.And they are getting better and more adaptive, which is where Distil comes in.

"When we first started, bots being used for taking over systems wasn't a thing," Essaid said. "Now it is a major thing. Bots are taking that data and using it to take over accounts. They're advanced enough to look like a real person and very persistent."

Distil's software and services serve to counter those bots, no matter how persistent. But, it's an eternal battle, with every improved defense eventually facing a more powerful bot that in turn leads to even better defenses.

"Bot makers are always getting more advanced. The average lone wolf could teach you how to make a bot in half an hour that could be hidden in a browser thanks to a lot of open source technology." Essaid said. "There is no silver bullet with these bots, no one way to combat them. You want to cobble together as many ways as possible."

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