Semmle appoints its first CSO to build out world-class security research team and lead product security

May 09, 2019

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SAN FRANCISCO,-- Semmle, a code analysis platform for securing software, today announced it has hired Fermín Serna as its first chief security officer. Serna will be responsible for building a world-class security research team focused on securing open source software, as well as leading product security across all of Semmle. He joins the company after more than seven years at Google, where he most recently served as head of product security. Prior to Google, Serna spent over four years at Microsoft after co-founding and serving as CTO of Next Generation Security S.L.

With two decades of experience running the industry's most sophisticated product security teams, Serna is an accomplished security researcher credited with multiple high-impact CVE disclosures, including a Pwnie Award for Best Client-Side Bug. He joins Semmle at a time of high-growth and momentum in its quest to secure the code that runs the world. After its global launch and Series B funding led by Accel Partners, Semmle doubled revenue in 2018, working with leading organizations like Google, Microsoft, Uber, NASA and Nasdaq. Since launch, the company has disclosed many high-profile CVEs, including vulnerabilities in Apache Struts, Apple XNU, and Facebook Fizz.

There is a compounding cybersecurity problem that's only growing with the increasingly complex technology landscape. Companies are developing critical software systems built on open source code, but they lack the ability to identify unknown vulnerabilities within these underlying technologies. While only the largest organizations in the world have the necessary security resources, even they are struggling to scale.

"Companies need to be proactive to ensure they're shipping the most secure software, but most product security investments are falling behind," said Oege de Moor, CEO at Semmle. "Open source is foundational to many organizations' code, making their software even more vulnerable. Fermín shares our belief that security is a shared responsibility, and he is the best person to lead our efforts to secure all open source, not only for Semmle, but for the industry."

"The elephant in the room is open source security," said Serna. "Open source plays a critical role in product innovation, but it also presents unique vulnerabilities that CISOs are only just beginning to understand. I am impressed by Semmle's unique approach to tackling this problem, and look forward to having a more significant impact on the future of product security."

About Semmle

Semmle believes security is a shared responsibility. Our mission is to secure all software by bringing the security and development communities together. Semmle is pioneering new techniques for automating variant analysis to find critical zero-days and variants of such vulnerabilities. Security and software engineering teams at Google, Microsoft, NASA, Nasdaq and Uber depend on Semmle's code analysis platform to secure their code. Headquartered in San Francisco, Semmle is a privately held company funded by Accel, with additional offices in Copenhagen, New York City, OxfordSeattle and Valencia, Spain.


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