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Edgewise Protects...

By Peter Smith, Founder and CEO — Jul 12, 2017

It all started for me when I was managing infrastructure and security for Harvard Business School. During my first project, developing a homegrown Network Access Control (NAC) solution for the campus network, I became captivated by the world of network security.

Later, at Endeca Technologies, where I was managing infrastructure for customers including Nike, American Express, and Bank of America, I realized that the industry model for network security had a fundamental flaw, that attempting to control software and users solely by describing network attributes could never truly achieve the intended effect. I started to become more conscious of the inherent limitations of conventional paradigms after an attacker traversed a policy in our data center firewall. By inspecting network communications alone, we were blind to and lacked control over the software that communicated over those addresses, and thus allowed malicious software to piggyback over authorized network access policies.

The seed was planted in my mind and a solution was coming into focus — if you truly want to control communications between software, then it is better to authorize those communications based on the cryptographic identity of the software instead of the addresses they use to communicate.

A couple of years later, with my idea germinating, I surveyed the market and found that network security solutions were still based on inspecting network packets. The saying is that necessity is the mother of all invention; well, we needed a better way. It was time to tackle this problem myself.

Working in my metaphorical basement (...who works in a basement anymore?), I built a prototype to demonstrate the concept that would ultimately become Trusted Application Networking. As I sought feedback from cybersecurity experts, I met Harry Sverdlove. As former CTO of Carbon Black, Harry not only understood the technology landscape but, having lived through enough cyber war-rooms, knew firsthand the challenges of properly implementing network security.

Harry and I joined forces in Spring 2016 and began growing the idea of authorizing communications through trusted software identity into a solution for protecting business applications in the cloud and data center. We quickly drew the interest of not only the top cybersecurity VC firms in the Boston area but also a number of CEOs at leading Boston cybersecurity companies. Security is a team sport, and with all the confusion in the market today, we believe that the path to better security requires cooperation and integration. We are humbled to have the support of so many talented and experienced cybersecurity professionals. I am proud to say that our launch is the result of a collaboration of not only the Edgewise team but of the broader Boston cybersecurity community.

What started as a problem I faced personally many years ago — implementing network security practices — has developed into an innovative solution I believe will fundamentally transform the way we approach network security in the cloud and data center. Harry and I set out to build a different breed of cybersecurity company that has the courage to challenge conventional wisdom, to look beyond the next generation of technologies for radically new approaches to today’s network security challenges. Our passionate engineers, a team of top experts in their field, challenge each other daily to exceed all previous expectations because we are not merely building a product; we are creating a new category of cybersecurity products to protect where firewalls fail.

I am thrilled to announce the launch of Edgewise Networks, realizing a vision I have had for many years and building a company that solves real problems facing security practitioners every day.


Peter Smith, Founder and CEO

Written by Peter Smith, Founder and CEO

Prior to founding Edgewise, Peter was on the founding team at Infinio Systems where he led cross-functional strategy for Infinio's products and technology as VP of Product Management. Peter brings a security practitioner’s perspective to data center products with more than ten years of expertise as an infrastructure and security architect of full-service data centers and customer-hosting environments for Harvard University, Endeca Technologies, American Express, Fidelity UK, Bank of America, and Nike.