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Axiom Cyber Solutions Makes Cybersecurity Affordable, Attainable, And Accessible To All Businesses

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Below is our recent interview with Troy Wilkinson, CEO of Axiom Cyber Solutions:

 Troy Wilkinson

Q: Could you provide our readers with a brief introduction to Axiom?

A: I think that our story is interesting on how we started the company and how we focus on the small to medium business sector.

Shannon and I met in Kosovo while working in a Peacekeeping mission for both the United Nations and the US State Department. Shannon was the Director of Software Development for the UN and I was working as a cyber diplomat with the US State Department. After starting our family, we decided to get out of the international diplomatic service and settle down in Las Vegas where some of our family lives.

We quickly realized that there are no resources for small and medium businesses in the cybersecurity field. Most cybersecurity companies focus on the large enterprises with very expensive solutions. What we found was that the average business owner, over 97% of American businesses, fell well below the attention of the larger cybersecurity companies. Axiom was founded to provide fully managed solutions to that segment. The Small Business Administration estimates that 97% of American businesses fall into the category of small businesses, defined as businesses with less than 500 employees. What Axiom further found was that for companies with less than 100 employees, it was even more difficult to protect their data because solutions were expensive and finding qualified cybersecurity staff to manage those solutions was difficult.

Axiom leverages the MikroTik chipset and builds our solutions on the RouterOS architecture, allowing us to bring industrial grade packet routing through our proprietary cybersecurity algorithms faster at a far lower cost than other cybersecurity companies.

Early on, we realized the major gap in current cybersecurity protections and that is the time from when a new vulnerability is identified in the world, until the time you patch your systems against it, is your risk factor. As time increases from disclosure of the vulnerability so does your risk of breach due to that vulnerability. With Shannon’s global experience in building platforms for companies like Cigna and Walgreens, we were able to build the SecureAmerica Threat Defense Platform. Our platform takes in over 100 open and closed sources of threat data and using machine learning and human guided automation, is able to create real-time updates for our customers. Axiom pushes out over 350,000 threat data points each day to each of our customers to keep their systems up to date against the latest cyber threats and vulnerabilities. A great example of this is the recent Equifax® breach where they were aware of the Apache Struts vulnerability for months before the breach occurred. All of Axiom’s customers were protected against the Struts vulnerability the day it was announced to the public.

Another major challenge for small and medium businesses is finding qualified cybersecurity professionals to help protect their data. Usually the business owner has one person doing all IT tasks, including the cybersecurity. Although IT professionals are good generalists, in today’s world it takes a specialized staff member to defend your systems against the latest threats. As we have seen over the last three years, hacks and attacks are getting more sophisticated and the IT generalists can’t keep up with the vast amount of data coming at them. Think of it like going to your family doctor for heart surgery. The family doctor is a great medical generalist but is not a cardiologist. The same applies here and we can’t emphasize enough that IT is not Cybersecurity.

Axiom’s solution to these challenges is simple. Provide everything the business needs to get protected, update it hundreds of times a day, monitor it 24 hours a day, and manage it for the business so that the business owner can do what he does best, which is why he opened his company in the first place. Axiom becomes an extension of our customers IT team, making them look like heroes. We never want to take work away from the existing IT personnel, we want to protect the business from next generation cyberattacks, so the IT personnel can concentrate on keeping the business’ technology running at peak efficiency.

Axiom is able to offer our services, hardware, software and support for less than the cost of buying the hardware itself. Comparatively for a true 1GB throughput next generation firewall featuring deep packet inspection and advanced threat intelligence for dark web blocking, ransomware blocking, denial of service protection, and cryptojacking blocking you could expect to pay between $8,000 to $15,000. You would then have to manage that device and ensure not only that it’s configured correctly but ensure that it is kept up to date each day.

In addition to Axiom’s proprietary firewall technology, we offer the entire security fabric for our customers depending on the size, scope, and depth of their business. Some additional features that we offer include Endpoint Detection & Response (EDR), next generation managed antivirus, deception grid technology (honeypots), secure storage and recovery, secure and encrypted PBX phone systems, vulnerability assessments, penetration testing, post-breach eradication & remediation, and on-demand reporting for a low monthly subscription. There is no upfront cost, no setup fee, and unlike other companies who try to sign you into a three-year agreement, we start with a 12-month engagement.

One of the largest understated values of having Axiom as your cybersecurity company is that the business owner can sleep well at night knowing that all cybersecurity is tied together to prevent threats or events falling through the cracks. When companies cobble together multiple solutions that don’t talk to each other, the risk of events and threats going undetected rises exponentially. All of Axiom’s engineers are cybersecurity educated and certified through US Government recognized cybersecurity programs that not only are difficult to achieve, are difficult to maintain because there is a high standard of continuing education required to remain certified.

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Q: You’ve recently announced and welcomed Former FBI Special Agent as Head of Business Development; could you tell us something more?

A: Brent, like myself, comes from the Law Enforcement industry of helping people who have been victims of cybercrime. Brent dedicated a good portion of his time educating the community and business owners on the risks of cyber attacks and what protections that companies could put in place to prevent such attacks. Shannon and I worked with Brent even before opening Axiom on cybersecurity cases that involved cyber-attacks, insider data theft and intellectual property theft cases. Brent is very influential in the cybersecurity community across the country and regularly speaks at events across the globe. Brent’s decision to work with Axiom was based on the ideals and principles of the founders and that is to focus on the small and medium business community who are the forgotten business owners left on their own to secure their networks. Brent had many opportunities to work with cybersecurity firms across the country but chose to join Axiom because of the products, services, and focus of the company on helping those that cannot help themselves.

The FBI has a partnership with the private business sector, known as InfraGard. This is a platform for business owners and local stakeholders to get a basic security clearance and attend private briefings from the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and other government agencies. For many years, and up to retirement, Brent was the head of the Las Vegas FBI InfraGard chapter ensuring the proper flow of information about today’s data breaches to those who need the information the most, the community. Through Brent’s partnerships, he was and is still able to ensure that our customers and potential customers are informed and protected.

Q: What is SecureAmerica Threat Defense Platform and how does it work?

A: The SecureAmerica Threat Defense Platform® (the Platform) is the world’s first polymorphic cyber defense platform in the market. Polymorphic describes the constant dynamic changing protection that is curated using machine learning and automation. The Platform takes in over 100 open and closed sources of threat intelligence from all over the world that provide information such as Dark Web nodes, Dark Web sites, Ransomware servers, Ransomware sites, Malware sites, malicious servers, malicious websites, indicators of compromise behaviors of malware, viruses, and more. These data points are then parsed using big data analytics to extract the meaningful and actionable intelligence that becomes an update for our customers. After series of offline tests, the Platform pushes out an update in real-time to all clients and the update is installed without interrupting the client’s network. Any internet traffic that matches any of the 350,000 daily data points is immediately blocked preventing infections such as ransomware, malware, viruses, or worse – nation state attacks, intellectual property thefts, and data breach. Without this threat intelligence, in most cases your defenses would be static, not dynamic, and hackers would eventually be able to find a way around your protections.

One of the most important features of our next generation firewall technology is that it is self-learning and dynamic rather than a static appliance that only “alerts” when events happen. When attacks such as a denial of service or a ransomware attack occur, our defenses take action by not only blocking the activity but also identifying the source of the attack. This is crucial to blocking the offending IP address(es) dynamically and preventing them from further impacting not only this one client, but all clients. All threat intelligence is shared among all clients so if there is a major attack at one customer, all customers get updates to identify and block that offender. The importance of dynamic protection is further highlighted by the fact that hackers change their attacks and strategies daily, hourly, or by the minute to subvert detection systems. This is another reason we are updating over 350,000 data points each day to stay ahead of the latest threats and attacks.

Q: What makes you stand out from your competition?

A: Axiom is unique in the fact that we focus on the small to medium business sector bringing affordable, managed solutions to customers, so they can get the highest level of protections at a price that they can afford. This is why we have a monthly subscription model rather than a large upfront cost, and this is why our packages start at $229 per month, including the firewall.

Aside from the unique business model, Axiom takes three very distinctly separate verticals and brings them together for our clients.

First are the hardware manufacturers. Next Generation Firewall manufacturers want to sell you a commodity, a box, and then you as the customer are expected to know how to properly configure the appliance, install it in your network, update it on a daily basis, and monitor it around the clock to ensure there is no breach activity. This is genuinely where most cyberattacks are successful is either due to an improperly configured firewall, or not updating against the latest threats. When vulnerabilities are disclosed to the public, hackers use this information as a means to attempt to break into computer networks. It’s a virtual playbook for the hackers that will be effective until you patch against the threat.

Second are companies that will manage your cyber defenses. These companies generally start their fees around $3,000 per month and it doesn’t include the expensive hardware that you must also purchase. Firewall management companies also update your systems quarterly, meaning four times per year in stark contrast to the 50,000 significant security updates that Axiom applies to our customer’s systems. Because we manage the cyber defenses which are also our proprietary software, we can update your systems in real-time without having to worry about impacting the business.

Third are companies that sell the Threat Intelligence that is critical to keeping your systems up to date against the latest threats and attacks. Apart from the manufacturer’s recommended firmware updates, threat intelligence are specific data points that can include ransomware nodes, dark web notes, known command and control servers, malicious sites, malicious servers and other indicators of compromise. The companies who sell threat intelligence will provide you the data but will not apply it to your systems for you. You must decide what’s useful to apply and then update your own hardware.

Axiom is the only company that provides the next generation firewall with full deep packet inspection, ransomware algorithms, denial of service protection, and cryptojacking defense then configures and manages it custom for your businesses needs and backs this with world class threat intelligence to provide the most holistic perimeter defense available in the market today.

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Q: What are your plans for the future?

A: Axiom will continue to focus on helping small and medium businesses get the protections they need, as well as fully manage them so that the business can focus on what they do best. With the launch of our software plugin for threat intelligence, I see Axiom expanding our management and updating of MikroTik devices with our new Axiom Shield plugin as a crucial business unit. The vision of the company continues to be helping those who can’t afford the expensive solutions offered by other companies and becoming the trusted resources for our clients.

Axiom will continue to expand operations across the US for our small and medium business customers as well as many other countries where MikroTik chipsets and RouterOS are in use today.

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