The end of 2019 marks the end of a decade. Although Adversary hasn’t been around for anywhere close to a decade, sometimes it feels like it with all that we’ve accomplished in our very short history. Our story started in 2014 when our co-founder, Charlie Eriksen, wrote the first exercises to use as a teaching tool when teaching corporate security training sessions. In 2016, the very first prototype of Adversary began to be developed and 2017 marks the beginning of what the Adversary security training platform is today.
Since going to market at the end of 2018, we humbly believe we have already accomplished so much and because of that would like to share our highlights from the past year. Here are 10 things we’re particularly grateful for:
All of our accomplishments would mean nothing without customers, so the very first item on our list is you!
We sold our very first Adversary licenses in 2018 and since then we have been lucky enough to acquire quite a few exciting new customers in our first year of life. Thanks to those of you who have put your faith in a young company looking to disrupt the security training market. You can read about the success of a few of them here.
Along with growing our team and customer base, we also kicked off our partner program and have already grown our partner network which, in essence, also expands our team. These partnerships provide us with invaluable connections to new markets, expertise in the industry, and the opportunity to grow even more rapidly.
Thanks for a great year partners, you know who you are!
In the past year, we added 6 new team members to the Adversary team. This might not seem like much, but at a lean start-up of 12, this doubles our headcount. With these modest additions we’ve been able to up our game in content creation, marketing, and customer success. Which brings us to our next 3 points.
Continuous learning is very close to our hearts and we firmly believe that with any kind of education or training, we are always learning. When it comes to security this especially rings true as the world of cybercrime is ever changing, meaning we have to be on top of our game and respond quickly to what’s going on in the world of security.
With our new hires, we’ve been able to really pick up our content creation game, particularly in the last few months and regularly add new missions. We’re especially proud of our new storyline module, which already includes 3 storylines. These allow you to follow through a hacking story by using the skills you’ve already learned in our core OWASP and PCI training to hack your way through websites based on various industries.
2019 also marks the beginning of our digital marketing efforts, the most noteworthy of those being our brand new website. Since the launch of the new website in the summer of this year, we’ve already seen an increase in traction and brand awareness of Adversary.
It has also enabled us to double down on our social and content marketing efforts and regularly add valuable stories to our blog. If you’re interested in getting updated when we have new content, you can subscribe to our newsletter below.
It’s one thing to sell you a product to train your development teams in security, but it’s another to ensure our customers are successful with that product and getting the most out of it they possibly can. That’s why we included a customer success manager in our 2019 hires. Since then we’ve been able to better understand our customers’ needs and design our roadmap accordingly.
We have also received fantastic feedback from our customers since implementing our customer success program, which we would not have received otherwise. To those who have taken the time to speak with our customer success manager openly and honestly about our platform, we thank you. All insight from those using the platform everyday, both good and bad, helps us to improve. After all, we are also continuously learning.
On the topic of valuable feedback, a lot of it has come from individual users themselves. We are very happy to see so many of our trainees using our user rating and feedback features in the Adversary platform. Knowing what developers find helpful or not helpful or simply which labs are more fun than others helps us to design our content in a way that’s catered to you and not simply what we think might be educational or exciting.
After our very first public mission we launched at the end of 2018 about the Facebook hack, we realized how popular these can be for the developer population. After all, we’re all about spreading knowledge about common software vulnerabilities and educating the general population about security flaws and how simple they can sometimes be. By seeing how easy it is to replicate some of these famous hacks, we learn to think about security not only when writing code, but in our daily lives.
So in 2019 it was important to us to continue to put out content freely available to the public and we launched two new public missions, one showing a buffer overflow vulnerability, which was used to hack WhatsApp and the other showing how the breach leading to the Panama Papers leak worked. We really hope our audience has enjoyed these and we plan to continue this trend in the new year and psst… we already have a couple in the making. Stay tuned.
Along with new content and public missions, we’ve also added some exciting new features. Some of the highlights include:
Software development kit (SDK): Our SDK allows our team of content creators, partners, and customers to create content more quickly and easily to add to the Adversary platform. We often find that customers want to include some of their own content to distribute to their team and now they can do that.
As our customer base has grown along with our partner network, it’s allowed us to enter new markets. We can now proudly say that we have customers in eight countries throughout Europe and North America and we are always adding more. Not only that, but we are gaining experience with a number of industries and better learning every single day the specific needs of those industries.
In the meantime, we wish you all a wonderful and relaxing holiday season and happy new year!