Shift5 Raises $20M to Defend Military Transportation From Cyberattacks

Amid the rising rates of cyberattacks, Shift5 seeks to defend the operational technology that military and commercial transportation rely on.

Written by Charli Renken
Published on Oct. 12, 2021
Shift5 Raises $20M to Defend Military Transportation From Cyberattacks
Shift5 Raises $20M to Defend Military and Commercial Transportation from Cyberattacks
(From left to right) Josh Lospinoso, co-founder and CEO, Mike Weigand, co-founder and chief growth officer and Joe Lea, president. | Photo: Shift5

Shift5, an operational technology cybersecurity company focused on defending military platforms and commercial transportation systems, announced it raised a $20 million Series A round Tuesday.

Led by 645 Ventures, this funding round will allow Shift5 to provide enhanced cybersecurity and operational intelligence solutions for military and commercial transportation fleet operators. This includes defense from cyberattacks on planes, trains and military vehicles, as well as equipment malfunction detection to help prevent costly operational repairs.

Operational technology (OT) is critical for commercial and military transportation fleets. However, most OT currently embedded in transportation vehicles was designed before the rise of digital connectivity and don’t hold up to modern cybersecurity standards. This leaves a lot of national infrastructures vulnerable to today’s cyberattacks.

“The increasing rate of cyber physical attacks against national infrastructure has exposed the digital insecurity of the U.S. systems that underpin modern society. Successful cyberattacks triggered gasoline and meat shortages and public transportation outages, impacting the daily lives of thousands and incurring downstream costs to impacted businesses,” Josh Lospinoso, Shift5 co-founder and CEO, said in a statement.

Lospinoso went on to say that cybersecurity solutions are a national security imperative. 

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Led by founding members of the U.S. Army Cyber Command, Shift5 offers both hardware and SaaS products that defend OT through data capture, visualizations, analytics and alerts. It continuously monitors vehicles to detect and prevent breaches through three simple steps: intake, engine and gauge cluster. 

First, Shift5 installs its intake product as either hardware or software to capture data from the vehicle’s existing serial databus. This allows Shift5 to collect, compress and transmit critical information back to a client’s cybersecurity team. Next, Shift5’s engine uses advanced algorithmic machine learning to continuously monitor each vehicle’s serial databus. If it finds an anomaly, it sends an alert and logs activity for review. Lastly, the gauge cluster allows cybersecurity teams to visualize all this data and transform it into meaningful information so transportation leaders can make critical defensive decisions.

“When we talk about defending OT for transportation infrastructure assets, it’s with the understanding that the margin for error is minuscule,” Joe Lea, Shift5 President of Shift5, said in a statement. “... Transportation is infrastructure that drives global economic performance, that millions of people rely on daily and that defends the nation; lacking the ability to defend it is unacceptable.”

Shift5 already does significant contract work with the U.S. government. Recently, the company worked with the U.S. Army Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office (RCCTO) to configure Shift5’s commercial technology on Army combat vehicles.

Shift5 plans to use the new funding to increase hiring, advance the company’s platform and expand its clientele.

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Artificial Intelligence • Cloud • Internet of Things • Machine Learning • Analytics • Industrial