DataGuard, which offers GDPR and privacy compliance-as-a-service, raises $ 20 million – TechCrunch

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Watchdogs have begun to address the problem that new working methods and online activities required due to the spread of the coronavirus pandemic are creating new challenges in the areas of privacy, security and data protection. Today, a startup announces a growth financing round to help online businesses better navigate those issues.

DataGuard, a Munich-based startup that offers "GDPR-as-a-service" – essentially a cloud platform to help those who do business online to ensure they comply with various regional regulations and privacy best practices through customer data processing activities to analyze, with options and suggestions for improving privacy compliance, giving them the ability to customize their IT infrastructure and internal processes to do so – raised $ 20 million, money it will use to continue its operations in Europe and America and continue to invest in expanding its technology.

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The financing comes from a single investor, London A peak, and is the first external financing for the company. We ask, but it appears that DataGuard is not disclosing its rating with this round.

The news comes at a critical time in the world of risk finance. We see a mix of deals that were closed or nearly closed before the worst pandemic reared (meaning some deals are just being put on ice, Zoom meeting or not); or are done specifically to help with business continuity after all the interruptions of normal life (that is, the company is too interesting not to support it); or close specifically because the startup has built something that will show how useful it will be in the coming months.

As with the strongest funding rounds, DataGuard falls into a few of those categories.

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On the one hand, it has shown a demand for its services before this hit. Today, the startup provides privacy policy services to both small and medium-sized businesses and larger companies, and since its launch in 2017, it has attracted 1,000 customers.

"Millions of companies strive to comply with privacy regulations such as GDPR or CCPA," said Thomas Regier (photo, left), who founded the company together with Kivanc Semen (right), in a statement.

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“We are excited to partner with One Peak to help many more organizations around the world become and remain privacy compliant. Our Privacy-as-a-Service solution provides customers with access to a proprietary full-stack platform and services from a dedicated team of data privacy experts. This enables customers to gain insight into their data processing activities and operationalize privacy and compliance across their organization. ”

Regier tells us that the company has started up to 100 employees, which also underlines the company's capital efficiency, which is also very attractive at the moment.

On the other hand, the large-scale shift to more online and remote work, coupled with a massive increase in online traffic due to more people staying at home to reduce the number of new Covid-19 cases, means much more traffic and stress tests to websites, apps and other online services.

All of that creates exactly the kind of environment where we can overlook it for a while some of the trickier and more demanding aspects of the privacy policy, but they are nevertheless important to remain intactNot least because malicious hackers can take advantage of vulnerable situations, whether regulators can eventually refocus and come back with heavy fines, or consumers respond with poor PR and more.

"We have a truly horizontal product that has the potential to become an integral part of the technical stack in both businesses and SMEs," Semen said in a statement. “We will use the financing to realize our product roadmap. We will achieve this in two ways: by increasing the level of automation by improving the machine learning capabilities in our privacy software suite and by accelerating our development of new product categories. ”

DataGuard is one of many startups that have emerged to help companies navigate the waters of privacy regulation, which are usually not the core competences of the companies, but have become an essential part of how they can (and should) do business online .

Others include OneTrust, which also helps companies design and implement better data protection policies; and In country, which specifically focuses on providing services to help companies understand and adhere to data protection policies that vary from region to region. OneTrust last year passed $ 1 billion, speaking of the enormous opportunity and demand in this space.

OnePeak believes that DataGuard's view of the proposition is one of the more effective and efficient, which is one reason why it has supported the team. "We are incredibly excited to support the world-class DataGuard founding team," said David Klein, co-founder and managing partner at One Peak, in a statement. "We are convinced that DataGuard's advanced software suite, combined with its comprehensive service offering, provides both businesses and SMBs with an end-to-end solution that meets their data privacy needs across the board."

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