Last updated at Tue, 05 Apr 2022 12:15:00 GMT

Rapid7’s mission is to advance cybersecurity for all — and an essential part of that effort is making the field and its best resources easier to access. That’s why we deliver solutions that meet the needs of large enterprises but can also be deployed and operated by more resource-constrained teams. It’s also why we’ve put so much time, effort, and capital into creating open-source tools and research that help democratize security knowledge.

In keeping with this focus, access and inclusion have also been at the core of our philanthropic and community engagement efforts. Over the years, we’ve launched and supported numerous initiatives to expand diversity by ensuring greater access to careers in cybersecurity. This includes supporting STEM programs that provide opportunities for experiential learning with industry professionals, as well as programs like Hack.Diversity that ensure we’re accessing the full talent landscape as we hire our next thousand employees.

Introducing the Rapid7 Cybersecurity Foundation

As we address the challenges in cybersecurity, we must also remain focused on ensuring the underserved and underrepresented have access to careers and solutions in the field. Over the past 10 years, we’ve allocated millions of dollars in support of organizations that help support this goal. In 2020, Rapid7 established and funded a Donor-Advised Fund with the Tides Foundation, and in 2021, we donated over $300,000 to numerous organizations from our Fund. But we were far from done. A few months ago, we formed the Rapid7 Cybersecurity Foundation and seeded it with $1 million.

The Foundation’s mission is to democratize cybersecurity by focusing on access for the underrepresented and underserved. We do this by promoting a diverse and inclusive cybersecurity workforce, supporting free and open security solutions, and advocating for those who often lack a voice in advancing security.

The Foundation will partner with organizations that work in the following areas in pursuit of creating a secure and prosperous digital future for all:

  • STEM education, diversity and inclusion in technology, and efforts by organizations to expand opportunities to historically underrepresented groups and make careers in cybersecurity more accessible for all
  • Open-source tools and volunteering to help make effective cybersecurity solutions available to under-resourced organizations, including nonprofits and municipalities
  • Research and policy advocacy to strengthen cybersecurity for vulnerable communities, improve cybersecurity awareness, and make achieving effective security outcomes more available to all

Putting purpose into practice

After more than 8 years of having the privilege of being Rapid7’s General Counsel, I’m ecstatic to have the opportunity to serve as Executive Director of the Rapid7 Cybersecurity Foundation and to head up our growing ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) program. In preparing for this transition, I recently read the excellent 2022 Letter to CEOs written by Larry Fink, CEO and Chairman of Black Rock. In it, he writes that a clear sense of purpose, consistent values, and engaging with and delivering for key stakeholders is what distinguishes truly great companies.

Accelerating digital transformation continues to create new challenges and opportunities for cybersecurity practitioners and the industry. It is also redefining the relationship between a company, its employees, and society. Fink writes:

Putting your company’s purpose at the foundation of your relationships with your stakeholders is critical to long-term success. Employees need to understand and connect with your purpose; and when they do, they can be your staunchest advocates. Customers want to see and hear what you stand for as they increasingly look to do business with companies that share their values. And shareholders need to understand the guiding principle driving your vision and mission.

The Rapid7 Cybersecurity Foundation, with its focus on helping advance cybersecurity for the underserved and underrepresented, is a natural extension of Rapid7’s mission to advance cybersecurity for all. It’s part of our effort to put that guiding purpose at the center of our relationship with our customers, employees, and shareholders.

Later this week, we will be unveiling our first Social Good Report, which highlights our broader work advancing social good, for which the Foundation will be an important complementary vehicle. We are eager to get started and look forward to engaging with members of our community and organizations globally to help build a secure and prosperous digital future for everyone. Please reach out to partner with us.


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