The Secret Cybersecurity Weapon Of Target, Visa And Amazon

A father-son duo came from out of nowhere with a more clever idea to protect networks from hackers—and now have a $1.75 billion startup with $160 million in the bank.

Orion Hindawi, a 35-year-old whiz born and raised in Berkeley, Calif., and his father, David, a 70-year-old immigrant from Iraq by way of Israel, have been answering questions like that since 1997. Their first startup, a device-management service called BigFix, was sold to IBM for $400 million in 2010. Their new venture, Tanium, offers a powerful and completely novel way to scan and control the security of thousands of devices at once and is in use by the likes of Visa, Amazon, Best Buy, the U.S. Department of Defense and Nasdaq. Desktops, laptops, servers, cash registers and even heart-rate monitors–each one a potential entry point for hackers–can be made accessible to network administrators in seconds through Tanium. “Most of our customers had no idea how many computers they had before we got there,” Orion says. “If they can’t answer that basic question, how are they supposed to answer what’s running or where their users are or where their data is?”

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