Berkeley, CA – February 13, 2019 – Elevate Security announced today that it has raised $8 million Series A to develop the first fully integrated Security Behavior Platform, to change employees’ habits while giving Security teams unprecedented visibility into security readiness. Defy Partners led the financing, with existing investor, Costanoa Ventures, participating. Elevate has raised $10M to date and will be using this new capital to expand the team, open a new engineering hub in Montreal, and accelerate go-to-market for its platform.

According to the 2018 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, 93% of all breaches are the result of attacks targeting people — namely, employees. Traditional security awareness training has not reduced this risk, leaving employees uncomfortably numb, concerned but un-empowered. Leveraging the latest advances in behavioral and data science, Elevate is providing a sorely needed new approach to motivate, enable and reward employees for making good decisions, while providing CISOs and awareness practitioners visibility and insight into employee behavior and risk.

In order to develop the platform to make people-powered security attainable for all companies, Elevate has hired Jean-François Gailleur as vice president of engineering. Jean-François has held key leadership roles at AppDirect, SAP and RadialPoint, in addition to lecturing at École de technologie supérieure in Montreal. Gailleur is charged with building out Elevate’s engineering team in Montreal.

The funding will also be used in part to accelerate the go-to-market strategy of the Elevate Platform, which measures, motivates and rewards employee security behavior change.

“Sending more content to our employees just wasn’t moving the needle on risk prevention,” said Elevate customer, James Hong, Sr. Manager, Security Engagement, Autodesk. “Elevate is helping us change the game and take our program beyond awareness to readiness by giving us and our employees visibility and insight to know how we are doing along our journey to employee-centric risk reduction.”

“The vast majority of hacking breaches have to do with taking advantage of people,” said Trae Vassallo, co-founder and managing director from Defy. “Elevate founders, Robert and Masha have combined their knowledge and expertise in cybersecurity to help transform employees from potential weaknesses into security assets.”

“We’re really proud to be building an inclusive security company, and partnering with Defy and Costanoa is enabling us to do that in a powerful way,” said Masha Sedova, co-founder and chief product officer. “Our company is 50% female, engineering included, and we have an all-women outside board. The culture we’re building internally is just as exciting as what we’re building externally for our great customers.”

As part of this financing, Trae Vassallo and Martina Lauchengco have joined the board.

Robert Fly, co-founder and chief executive officer, said, “For too long, companies have treated their employees like the weakest link. We knew we could help customers empower their employees to be security superheroes against threats. I’m excited to build a team to make this a reality for more and more companies.”

About Elevate Security

Elevate Security is the first fully integrated Security Behavior Platform. Elevate enables CISOs and security awareness practitioners to transform employees into security superheroes as a first line of defense against the 93% of security incidents that target human error. Customers across industries, from Autodesk to Clover, have seen employee detection and reporting of attacks improve by 5x or more. With offices in Berkeley, CA, and Montreal, Elevate is backed by Defy Partners, Costanoa Ventures, and is currently hiring. To learn more, please visit

About Defy

Founded in 2016, Defy is a new venture firm exclusively focused on early Series A, an underserved part of the venture landscape. The firm launched in 2017 after closing its first fund of $151 million. Defy was co-founded by long-term venture capitalists Neil Sequeira and Trae Vassallo, with a goal to invest in entrepreneurs and companies looking to solve complex problems. Defy’s focus is to help companies, after seed funding, mature and scale into companies ready for growth capital. The firm’s founding team has more than 40 years experience in helping successful entrepreneurs grow companies like The Honest Company, Nest, Elemental, Dropcam and more. For additional information, please visit Follow Defy @defyvc on Twitter.

About Costanoa Ventures

Costanoa Ventures backs tenacious and thoughtful founders who change how business gets done. Costanoa seeks to be a long-term partner to entrepreneurs building durable companies leveraging data to solve complex business problems. For more information, please visit