Data Privacy Startup Gets $25 Million in Funding


Transcend, a software that allows users to track, access, and delete their data received $25 million in Series A funding, with Index Ventures and Accel leading the round. Ben Brook and Michael Farrell came up with the idea while they were computer science students at Harvard. They launched the startup in 2017, with Brook acting as CEO and Farrell the CTO.

Following tighter regulations on data privacy and protection, companies must now submit user data to customers upon their request. That means individuals now have the right to access their entire data transcript, delete it, or even opt out of sharing certain information. That includes erasing your credit card and geographic location information that shopping websites collect.

That all became possible after new laws and acts were introduced, such as The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act. Any corporation that operates within these jurisdictions must hand users their data when they ask for it.

However, recovering all that information is a slow process for most companies. That’s because several entities handle data collection and storage, including databases, web vendors, and third-party platforms. And California corporations better expect a surge in such requests once the Consumer Privacy Act goes into effect next month. Therefore, this could be one big logistical nightmare if they are ill-prepared.

Transcend to the Rescue

But that’s where Transcend steps in. The infrastructure integrates into companies’ systems and applications to track down consumer data from every possible source. It will scan SaaS tools, databases, vendors, and warehouses, then retrieve specific user information. In other words, this software can significantly help corporations handle user data requests. And with the latest $25 million funding, Transcend takes the leading spot in the data privacy market.

But it wasn’t all smooth sailing, explains Brook. “We got rejected like 18 times,” he told Business Insider, referring to the time he and Farrell flew out to Silicon Valley to pitch their idea to investors. Then, as they were headed to the airport to return home, they received a call from a Harvard alumnus with an offer of $50,000. The investment helped launch the company, before a $3.95 million fund led by Accel drove them out of the shadows. And with the latest $25 million fund, things are looking up.

But before that call, Brook admitted that they were “sort of heads down“ and weren’t even sure whether they would be able to launch their own company. “I think since then (the call), it’s been relatively smooth sailing. We’ve been very fortunate to have a brand new market that’s growing quite rapidly,” Brook said. And the Transcend co-founder and CEO believes that more regulations and laws like GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act will see light because online privacy awareness is growing among consumers.

Now, if you’re looking for online privacy, Transcend isn’t your only resort. You can also use a virtual private network (VPN) to redirect and encrypt your traffic. TheVPN.Guru provides valuable anonymity tips, as well as VPN reviews and how-to guides to protect your online wellbeing.

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