Breach Clarity’s FinovateWest 2020 demo (Nov 2020)

Breach Clarity
was founded in 2016 (launched in 2019) by my long-time friend Jim Van Dyke and his colleague Al Pascual. Jim founded financial services consulting

firm Javelin Strategy 20 years ago before exiting to Greenwich Associates in 2015.

The initial premise was to bring clarity to the noise surrounding data breaches. The startup looks at each breach and assigns a score of 1 to 10 so consumers can better understand its severity. Breach Clarity then provides a checklist of actions consumers can take to protect themselves such as freezing credit, monitoring credit, and so on (see screenshot below).

But general educational guidelines can only take a consumer so far. The key to gaining and keeping attention is to personalize the “security feed.” And true to its mission, Breach Clarity’s latest enhancement does just that. It sends an alert when a customer’s personal info has been exposed in a data breach. And then provides specific steps to take to secure their finances including FI-specific enhanced security options within online banking (see screenshot below).

security steps for financial institution customers from Breach Clarity

Co-branded page at Breach Clarity with action steps

Opportunities for financial institutions:

FIs create a co-branded area within online banking. Impacted consumers are sent to this area via an alert and can learn about the breach, then specify what they can do about it at the partner FI. Typically, customers would be instructed to activate any unused security controls (eg. turning on 2–factor authentication, credit monitoring, etc).
FIs have the potential to earn a positive return in several ways (roughly in order of magnitude):
– Increased adoption of security controls, reducing subsequent fraud costs
– If applicable, increased use of fee-based services such as credit report monitoring
– Higher satisfaction and engagement of digital banking, increasing retention
– Potential to bundle Breach Clarity services into a premium subscription-based account
– Eventual reduction support calls/tickets, though that’s a mixed bag since calls may at first INCREASE as customers learn how to use Breach Clarity
– Potential increase in customer acquisition if the FI can become the known provider of data breach info in its market (tough to accomplish though)

Bottom line
: Security is the number one concern of digital consumers. Anything you can do to make them worry less is money in (your) bank.

Company vitals:

Description: Co-branded portal for consumers to learn about specific data breaches and what they should do when impacted
Business model: B2B2C (through banks primarily). Enterprise license plus per-user fees.
HQ: Walnut Creek, CA
Founded: July 2019
Funding: Undisclosed but currently raising a $2M round
– 3 clients added since 2019 Finovate Fall demo including a co-branded offering with Sontiq
– Awarded Best of Show at FinovateWest (24 Nov 2020) and VentureTech (Sep 2020)

Jim Van Dyke, CEO
Al Pascual, COO

FI customer: Baxter Credit Union
Coming soon: Enterprise tools (Q1 2021) for fighting fraud
Company links: Website | Linkedin | Twitter


– Ron Shevlin’s glowing introduction of Breach Clarity (Forbes, 8 Sep 2020; 2,200 views)
American Banker profile (paywall) (20 Feb 2020)
– Finovate blog archive