Tech startup Oblivious AI raises $1m

Oblivious AI, a Dublin-based privacy tech startup, has raised $1m (€850,000) in pre-seed funding from a group of angel investors and venture capital firms including Atlantic Bridge, Act Venture Capital, and Hustle Fund.

The business was founded last year by Polish CEO Robert Pisarczyk, who has a PhD in mathematics from Oxford University.

His two co-founders are Trinity College and Oxford PhD graduate Jack Fitzsimons, an AI specialist and former Nasa researcher from Malahide, whose brother Joe founded Singapore’s first quantum computing startup, and Udit Garg, a former KPMG executive from India who has advised investment banks.

“In today’s data-driven economy, developers, data scientists, and support engineers have unprecedented access to sensitive information, and that creates prime hunting grounds for cybercriminals.

“After an alarming 600pc increase in cyberattacks, various personal data is sold on the dark web for as little as $20,” Pisarczyk said.

“Our product allows data to be processed without having direct access to the underlying sensitive information, helping governments, business and organisations to balance these trade-offs, enabling them to collaborate on sensitive data while maintaining strict legal, moral and ethical safeguards,”

“Many software developers struggle to integrate privacy considerations into even simple web-based health applications. We give them tools that only need one-click from their cloud environment.”

Oblivious has established itself as a data privacy thought leader, publishing collaborative research with the UN Committee of Experts for Privacy Preserving Technologies and Oxford University.

Former IBM researchers and security architects from cybersecurity giant McAfee are among the firm’s five other staff, which will increase in number thanks to the financing. Its team is understood to have previously worked with a partner on data privacy for a Covid tracking solution in India.

More than $3.5bn (€2.9bn) has been invested in over 200 privacy tech startups, including Shane Curran’s Dublin-based Evervault according to Crunchbase data. Sensitive cross-institutional data processing is estimated to be worth over $3trn (€2.5trn) globally, according to industry figures.

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