CloudMask, an innovator in masking data from hackers, today announced its partnership with Bellstone Consultancy Group, a trusted network of specialist security consultants focusing on the security and defence sector. Recent events including WikiLeaks, Stuxnet and Duqu are driving governments and businesses responsible for critical infrastructure to re-evaluate how they protect digital information.

"After 20 years in security consulting addressing technical, physical and procedural aspects of security, we've seen an increased focus on cyber security and protection of digital information," said Steve Taylor, managing director at Bellstone Consultancy Group. "As companies store more information in the cloud and communicate across different parameters, it's imperative that we extend our portfolio and team skills to include technical solutions that are tested and certified for government use."

The technology will be offered under Merlon Technologies within the Bellstone Consultancy Group. Merlon Technologies is extending its offering with CloudMask to protect data across multiple applications in the cloud and on premise. CloudMask acts as a last line of defence, masking data from hackers, even in the case of a total security breach. Data is masked throughout its lifecycle – from creation, in transit, storage and processing to consumption. Starting at the end device, CloudMask offers a zero trust model where no one is trusted with data – including hackers, governments, employees, cloud and company IT administrators. The partnership will allow customers to easily identify their secure universe, control security policies, mask data and report on access to the data.

Gartner expects cloud-based security services to grow to $3.7 billion by 2016, with annual growth of 20 percent. The highest growth is expected in the cloud-based tokenisation and encryption segment.

"Our expansion into the UK and signing new local partners marks an exciting and progressive milestone for the company. The partnership with Bellstone Consultancy enhances our partner portfolio and in-depth expertise in the security and defence sector," said Wael Aggan, CEO of CloudMask. "Recent events targeting the security and defence sector is a wake-up call to look at new ways to protect our assets and our information in a world where our adversaries, in most cases, are stronger than us."

Steve Taylor, managing director at Bellstone Consultancy Group concluded: "I have seen numerous companies affected by sophisticated hackers and leaked documents that have discredited the organisation and tarnished reputations. The ability for companies in this sector to mask their own data and the data of clients is critical at the highest level."

CloudMask has been evaluated and implemented by the Canadian federal government, financial institutions, small businesses and enterprises. CloudMask is the winner of the Canadian Innovation Commercialisation Programme (CICP) and is currently accepted to the Common Criteria Certification required to meet the security certification necessary to operate with governments in 26 countries.