Founded by the pioneers of the MC2 open source project from UC Berkeley RiseLab, Opaque creates the first collaborative analytics and AI platform for confidential computing
BERKELEY, Calif., June 28, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Opaque Systems, the pioneers of collaborative analytics and AI for confidential computing, today announced it has raised $22 million in Series A funding, bringing the company’s total financing to $31.6 million. The round was led by Walden Catalyst Partners, with participation from new investors, Storm Ventures and Thomvest Ventures, as well as all existing investors, Intel Capital, Race Capital, The House Fund, and FactoryHQ. Gartner predicts that by 2025, over 50% of organizations will adopt privacy-enhancing computation to process sensitive data and conduct multi-party analytics. Opaque will use the new capital to serve the accelerating market demand for collaborative analytics and AI in confidential computing.
Today, more than $300 billion of the world’s most valuable data remains untapped due to the lack of a secure processing environment. With the emergence of confidential computing, organizations can now secure sensitive data in Trusted Execution Environments (TEEs) in the cloud. However, enabling multiple parties to access, share, analyze and run AI/ML on encrypted data in TEEs has been the biggest roadblock to unlocking the $54B confidential computing opportunity.
The Opaque Collaborative Analytics and AI Platform is the first analytics platform purpose-built for confidential computing. It uniquely enables data to be securely shared and analyzed by multiple parties while maintaining complete confidentiality and protecting data end-to-end. With Opaque, for the first time, organizations can unlock high-value, previously untapped use cases across industries. For instance, financial services organizations are collaborating to better identify fraud and prevent money laundering. In the healthcare industry, multi-party collaboration on sensitive patient data is advancing drug discovery and disease detection.
“Our new investors, Walden Catalyst, Storm Ventures and Thomvest Ventures, and existing investors see the enormous market opportunity in performing collaborative analytics and AI on confidential data,” said Raluca Ada Popa, president and co-founder of Opaque Systems. “This financing will accelerate R&D and hiring as we cement Opaque’s position as the authority in multi-party analytics and AI for confidential computing. Global organizations are in desperate need of a secure solution to collaboratively analyze their confidential data and we are well positioned to meet this growing demand.”
As creators of the MC2 open source project, the Opaque team pioneered confidential computing for collaborative analytics and AI. The team, comprised of the world’s most esteemed security researchers and practitioners, including UC Berkeley professors Raluca Ada Popa and Ion Stoica (Co-Founder of Databricks), as well as former UC Berkeley graduates and industry visionaries Rishabh Poddar, Wenting Zheng and Chester Leung, is poised to accelerate innovation in this market.
The Opaque platform is changing how organizations access, analyze and execute machine learning on confidential data. Innovation breakthroughs include:
- High-performance analytics and AI/ML on encrypted data using familiar tools. The ability to isolate sensitive data in TEEs, including enclaves and confidential VMs, and perform collaborative, scalable analytics and machine learning directly on encrypted data using familiar tools such as Apache Spark and notebooks.
- Inter- and Intra-company collaborative analytics, AI/ML and data sharing. Allows for encrypted data or blended data sets to be shared across workspaces and teams with set policies that make data sharing and analytics a collaborative process––while keeping the encrypted results specific to each party.
- Multi-dimensional scaling across enclaves, data sources, and multiple parties. Provides a simplified data management approach with secure access across enclave clusters and the ability to automate cluster orchestration, monitoring, and management across multiple workspaces without operational disruption.
“The world of data analytics is colliding with stricter data security requirements. As data volumes scale to unprecedented levels, the increasing need to keep data safe from unwanted parties is limiting an organization’s ability to derive its full value,” said Ion Stoica, Opaque co-founder and board member. “Opaque has created a unique process for ensuring the security of data while still enabling organizations to perform multi-party and intra-organizational analytics. This process will become a foundational requirement at any organization that requires collaboration around sensitive data to power AI and ML models.”
“Confidential computing has been needed for many years, but it has always faced significant performance and deployment hurdles. Opaque is now making confidential computing completely frictionless,” said Young Sohn, founding managing partner at Walden Catalyst Partners. “The opportunity to work with such a promising company is truly an honor. It’s an understatement to say that we don’t come across teams that are this strong and this accomplished every day. This is truly the right team at the right time in a market that is poised for explosive growth.”
Confidential computing is supported by all major cloud vendors including Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud and Amazon Web Services and major chip manufacturers including Intel and AMD.
For further confidential computing industry updates and perspectives, follow Opaque Systems on Twitter @opaquesys and LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/opaquesystems/. Learn more about the confidential, collaborative analytics at https://opaque.co/blog/.
About Opaque Systems
Commercializing the open source MC2 technology invented at UC Berkeley by its founders, Opaque System provides the first collaborative analytics and AI platform for confidential computing. Opaque uniquely enables data to be securely shared and analyzed by multiple parties while maintaining complete confidentiality and protecting data end-to-end. The Opaque platform leverages a novel combination of two key technologies layered on top of state-of-the-art cloud security—secure hardware enclaves and cryptographic fortification. This combination ensures that the overall computation is secure, fast, and scalable. The technology has already been adopted by several organizations, such as Ant Group, IBM, Scotiabank, and Ericsson. For more information on Opaque Systems, please visit https://opaque.co/.