Descope is a company that has managed to obtain a substantial amount of capital financing in contrast to the current trend of capital being more difficult to come by. They recently declared they received a whopping amount of $53 million seed money for their authentication and user management platform, that prioritizes developers.
Funding for Descope came from many sources including Lightspeed Venture Partners, GGV Capital, Dell Technologies Capital, TechAviv, J Ventures, Cerca, Unusual Ventures, Silicon Valley CISO Investments, CrowdStrike CEO George Kurtz, and Microsoft chairman John W. Thompson. This money will allow for increased product development, exploration of new research fields, and a commitment to bolstering open source endeavors related to sign-in, authorization, and user management, according to Descope co-founder and CEO Slavik Markovich.
Markovich informed TechCrunch in a prompted email conversation that the Descope system makes it possible for developers to add security methods, user administration, and permission to both B2C and B2B apps easily with a minimum amount of code. It improves the time to market, elevates the productivity of engineering staff, ups the ease of use for customers, and puts a stop to numerous cyberattacks which are determined by identification.
You might be wondering why there was such a large amount of cash invested in a tech-centered startup? Markovich explained it was due to the circumstances. In difficult times, companies are forced to focus their software development priorities to undertakings that will increase their business potential. Descope makes this achievable by taking care of the non-income generating elements of authentication and user management, which releases up the workforce of developers.
In April of last year, the same group that had constructed the security operations platform Demisto, which Palo Alto Networks purchased in March of 2019, began the company Descope. They noted the frustration involved in constructing authentication and user management components, conversing on such topics as password management, single sign-on, tenant management, and roles and permissions. According to Markovich, this process took multiple years and consumed a great deal of their time.
Descope’s goal is to take authentication and user management off the to-do list of app developers, so that they can put their energy into more relevant projects instead of spending their time constructing and keeping up with authentication processes. This was explained by Markovich.
Markovich does not dispute that there are a lot of players in the field of user authentication such as ConductorOne, Stytch, Transmit Security, and Auth0 (backed by Okta). In 2021, funding for identity management startups through venture capital amounted to $3.2 billion, which was a historic high at the time. However, he argues that Descope stands out on account of its workflow and drag-and-drop screen editor that let developers customise authentication procedures for apps, without the need to write code.
Markovich mentioned that adopting a no-code strategy quickens the process of launching projects in the market and also makes it smoother to alter and maintain user experience with time. As such, it lets developers exert control over the user interface while avoiding the difficulty of designing authentication.
Descope provides various SDKs and APIs that make it possible for customers to add passwordless authentication processes such as biometrics, risk-based authentication and multi-factor authentication to already existing applications and platforms. Security teams can examine and review the app security processes in order to make sure they comply with any necessary policies.
The impetus for releasing Descope was largely due to a change in the market situation. A Mercator study predicted that two thirds of mobile phone user will no longer use passwords by the year 2024, while cutting-edge authentication techniques such as FIDO2, WebAuthn and passkeys have been established to lay the groundwork for a future where passwords are no longer needed. Markovich believes that the next stage is to enable developers to quickly add passwordless authorisation processes, as well as other means such as social logins, one-time passwords and magic links, to their applications.
A recent poll taken by Enterprise Strategy Group revealed that a large majority (85%) of IT and cyber security personnel feel that bringing in passwordless technology is a priority for them.
Markovich stressed that passwords are the main source of security breaches and can also be the cause of problems for customers when using a service, with an increased chance of them discontinuing the service. Cyberattacks such as credential stuffing, bot attacks, session hijacking, and brute force attacks further make the use of strong identity and authentication processes critical for any digital platform.
It’s a difficult period to start a new business due to a shortage of investment funds and doubt regarding the state of the economy. Furthermore, Descope has not made much progress, as the system is in its early stages, and Markovich refused to give details on either income or the amount of people that use their services.
Markovich remarks that Descope is prepared to face a slowed tech sector, and could even benefit from it since a weakened economy typically means a higher rate of fraud and cybercrimes.
Markovich stated that the members of Descope have extensive backgrounds as entrepreneurs, having created businesses during both strong and weak economic climates. He added that they understand how to allocate resources for projects which are beneficial to customers, have long-term sustainability, and are efficient.
It is yet to be determined whether that is the right thing to do.