West Coast Labs Completes Spinout to a Fully Independent Company

21 Oct West Coast Labs Completes Spinout to a Fully Independent Company

West Coast Labs Completes Spinout to a Fully Independent Company; Moves headquarters to the United States; Adds veteran information technology security executives

Newport Beach, Calif., September 2, 2014 – West Coast Labs LLC, a global leader in research, testing, certification, and real-time performance validation for information security products and services, today announced it has completed its spinout from Haymarket Media Group to become a fully independent entity. The company’s global headquarters and test facilities have relocated from the UK to the US, and the management team has been strengthened by the addition of a pair of key information technology security veterans.

West Coast Labs will continue to specialize in functionality testing, performance validation, and the Checkmark Certification of information security products and services. Serving an international client base of Global 2000 companies, government agencies, and leading technology developers, West Coast Labs plans to expand its already wide range of product testing and technical consultancy services.

“As an independent entity, we will deepen our focus on providing services that bridge the gap between technical excellence and the growing reality of a business-first mindset, both of which are key components of the corporate enterprise procurement process,” said Scott Markle, CEO of West Coast Labs. “We will accomplish this through the continued use of an evaluation ecosystem that measures the effectiveness of devices, products, and services across an ever-changing threat landscape.”

Market Position

West Coast Labs fills a critical void in the security testing marketplace by delivering analytical research into continuously deployed testing infrastructures engineered for complex business requirements. This approach creates trust within the industry and academia, while meeting the day-to day operational needs of corporations through in-depth, objective analysis. The company delivers a public facing certification system that is accepted worldwide, and at the same time provides private, internal assessments of security solutions in various deployment scenarios.

According to Richard Ford, president and CEO, AMTSO (Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization Inc.), “Testing of security products and services is both incredibly important and technically demanding. I’m excited to see West Coast Labs continuing to evolve, and am intrigued to see what new directions the new management team may adopt. There’s never a dull moment in the cybersecurity world, so I suspect things will be interesting, to say the least!”

Custom Products and Services

With over 15 years’ experience in the security product testing arena, West Coast Labs has developed a portfolio of services to satisfy vendor and end user needs for independent validation of functionality, performance and effectiveness in a variety of technical and business contexts.

West Coast Labs offers custom testing that provides a way for engineers and marketers to leverage the West Coast Labs test environments to obtain a credible independent third-party assessment. This consultative approach provides both vendors and their customers with focused test results in areas of functionality and performance, enabling them to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of numerous security technologies.

“When one of our portfolio companies needed a rigorous, independent evaluation and validation of a radical new security technology, we investigated all of the potential providers and West Coast Labs stood out as the best,” said Ridgely Evers, managing partner at Tapit Advisors and former CEO of nCircle Network Security.  “With the move of their headquarters to the US and the strengthening of their executive team, we fully expect that the ‘new’ WCL will be even better.”

New Management Team

With over 75 years combined experience, the executive management team at West Coast Labs provides thought leadership in research analytics, business insight, test infrastructure, and industry recognition. The reputations of the West Coast Labs brand and this new team have served as the catalyst for the enthusiastic migration of customers to the new entity. The new team includes:

Scott Markle, CEO, is an industry veteran with nearly 20 years of information security experience in business and product development, sales and marketing, and consortia and project marketing. Prior to the spinout, Markle served as director of US operations as well as vice president of business development.  Prior to joining West Coast Labs (Haymarket), he spent 10 years with ICSA Labs, another premier security testing company and independent division of Verizon Business, where he managed both network and content security technology groups, and implemented and oversaw the Premier Services division. He has led many industry groups that have directed the development of accepted test methodologies and security best practices within numerous developing technologies.

Roger Thompson, CTO, is a software innovator and thought leader in the malicious code / security space, and is one of the few first-generation anti-virus researchers still active in the industry, having built the first antivirus in Australia, in 1987.  Before joining the new West Coast Labs, he served as the chief emerging threat researcher at ICSA Labs, and prior to that was vice president of threat research at AVG Technologies (AVG).  He is a frequent speaker at security conferences worldwide, and is often sought out by the press for insights on matters of malicious code. He is a member of CARO (Computer Antivirus Research Organization – the world’s core antivirus researchers), and is on the editorial board of Virus Bulletin.

Larry Bridwell, vice president, strategic alliances, brings more than 18 years of information security and security testing experience to West Coast Labs. Prior to joining the new company, Bridwell served as vice president of global security strategies at AVG Technologies (AVG), one of the largest anti-virus and malware companies. There he worked closely with the technology groups to determine current and future malware trends, and develop and promote best practices and protection strategies using AVG security products. Before AVG, he was program manager for content security programs at ICSA Labs. He also served as manager of the Anti-Virus Product Developer’s consortium (AVPD), and managed and authored ICSA Labs’ highly regarded annual Virus Prevalence Survey. He is very active in anti-virus and malicious software working groups such as Association of Anti-Virus Asia Researchers (AVAR), European Institute of Computer Antivirus Research (EICAR), Anti-Spyware Coalition (ASC), and Department of Homeland Security’s Software Assurance Working Groups. He frequently presents at IT security conferences globally including Virus Bulletin, EICAR, AVAR, RSA, Comdex, and InfoSec World.

“When I was told about the West Coast Labs opportunity, I was immediately interested,” said Roger Thompson, new CTO WCL. “The best part about working for a testing lab is that you have the potential to help strengthen a whole raft of security products at once, which in turn, helps make the world a little safer. The real benefit, however, is that it’s simply fun.”

About West Coast Labs, LLC

Based in Newport Beach, Calif., West Coast Labs LLC is a global leader in technical research, testing and the Checkmark Certification of information security products and services. With market-leading research and testing facilities in the USA, UK, and China, West Coast Labs’ services used by both the leading information security brands as well as governments and enterprises worldwide. As an independent organization, West Coast Labs enables enterprises to leverage best of breed testing capabilities with unbiased feedback focused on informing procurement decisions.

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