Cyber Accelerator to help launch cyber security businesses

The Center for Innovative Technology in Herndon is starting a new project today. Mach37 is designed to help launch new cyber security businesses. And a Richmond man is one of the entrepreneurs involved.

Cyber attacks are a crisis. They've hit the New York Times, the Associated Press, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, and Citigroup.

Now the Center for Innovative Technology has launched Mach37, the first of its kind Cyber Accelerator, a think tank to get new cyber security businesses off the ground.

Explained CIT CEO and President Pete Jobse, "As we move to more advanced communications, we do more healthcare over the internet, we do more extended electronic commerce, we use our telephones for payment systems, the importance for cyber security is absolutely paramount."

Five start-up businesses and entrepreneurs are selected to spend ninety days in the Accelerator, being mentored by experts to develop their technology, business plans and marketing to attract investors. One of the entrepreneurs is Richmonder Art Payne, Executive Vice President of CypherPath.

"Some of the things we'll be doing here will be practicing on some of the cyber threats using that technology," said Payne.

Mach37 is based on other successful accelerators, like the Y Combinator in Silicon Valley, which launched hundreds of companies, including Redditt. That's why Virginia's Governor and General Assembly gave the Cyber Accelerator $2.5 million.

Said Governor Bob McDonnell, "Technology is the key to the future for Virginia in so many ways. It's one of the largest industries already in Virginia. It's key to supporting state government and the military. It's key to productivity in the private sector."

Now the entrepreneurs have ninety days to launch their businesses into the marketplace and cyberspace. Then the next group of start-ups moves in.