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Do you need someone to talk to? Blue Call is there for you!

 

Blu Call joined SUP46 one month ago and we have asked them a few questions about the membership experience so far.

 

 

Tell us a bit about your startup?

Blue Call is a digital market place where you can find someone to talk to. Think of it as UBER-shrink. You can talk to “Volunteers”- fellow humans, “Mentors”- people with an education in counseling and “Professionals”. Call someone directly and anonymously through the app and feel a bit better!

How did you come up with the idea?

When we were studying we experienced our own share of mental illness. Not very serious problems at first, but for example anxiety, stress and social pressure. We realized we needed someone to talk to, but didn’t have anywhere to go! In the public health care system, you have to wait for months before you get to talk to someone, and private care is too expensive. When we started to investigate this problem we discovered that we weren’t alone in this and that mental health issues are actually one of the biggest threats to global wellbeing. So we thought, why not explore the market place peer-to-peer model where everyone can help each other! And so BlueCall was born.

What do you think is the biggest challenge running a startup?

There is no right or wrong, you will never know if you’re making the right decisions until later! You just have to keep working hard and be very attentive and open towards change.

Why did you first apply to become an SUP46 member?

We were a part of STING´s accelerator program and since they are situated at SUP46 we had a great “free trial” for 5 months and came to love this place.

You´re a new member but what benefits have you experienced from sitting at SUP46?

SUP46 is offering a great office space, in a great location. We’re surrounded by people with fantastic energy and different experiences in building companies, always ready to help a fellow start-upper out. It’s a fun environment where creativity thrives. The list of the benefits we’ve experienced so far goes on… Can we stay forever!

What are you aiming to accomplish within the next six months?

Iterate our product towards becoming the #1 mental health hub in the world! For the next six months, we will focus on increasing the number and quality of calls, to make even more people feel better through BlueCall counseling!

 


Security for startups

Most small companies such as startups do not invest properly in security in their early stages. This is a result of believing that hackers only targets big corporations, which is a common misconception. More often than not, hackers prefer to target low-hanging fruit, which in this case is small and startup companies. In addition to this, the earlier you decide to invest in security, the more efficient it will be. If you wait too long with integrating security, you will most likely have a lot of legacy to deal with, which will make the shift more expensive and complex.  

SUP46 alumni member Detecitfy and their Customer Success Manager, Johan Båth, is sharing some of their best tips for small companies when it comes to security.

 

 

The reason small businesses get targeted

 

An easy target

It’s often easier to hack a small company that does not have their security routines and infrastructure in place. Established companies have either gotten hacked in the past and invested in the security infrastructure after a breach has occurred, or they have seen what can happen if a breach occurs. As a result, they have invested in their security and are therefore harder to compromise.

Lack of knowledge

The most common reason behind breaches starts with employee errors. This could be in the form of an employee that clicks a malicious link in a spoofed email; a link that is embedded in text or just from an email phishing campaign. Another common error is employees that are using the same password across multiple services, and if one of those services gets compromised, so will the other services (such as the Dropbox or LinkedIn breach where millions of user credentials get compromised).

With this said, automated hacker attacks put everyone at risk, no matter the size of the company. But there are things that you could and should do to prevent disaster from happening.

 

What should I do if I run a startup and want to avoid being hacked?

 

Educating employees

The first step should be to start educating all employees about the risk associated cyber attacks. One simple remediation for avoiding having credentials compromised is to use password managers such as LastPass, 1Password (or similar service) and use the built-in functionality of generating passwords, which are unique for all services. 

Next step is to inform the risks of phishing emails. This could either be done by showing examples of phishing emails and how you can validate the real origin of the emails, or to actually conduct internal testing and send out fake emails to the employees.

Spoofed emails are a bit harder to catch, though, since the origin of the emails looks to be legit (eg, from address is @companyname.com). To make sure that people are not spoofing emails from your company, make sure you have set up the SPF records correctly.

Make sure your software is updated

If you are using a CMS platform for your website, you need to make sure that there are no outdated plugins with known security flaws. This is especially important since hackers can scrape the web for sites that are using outdated versions. For example, if you are using WordPress, you should make sure that you have turned on automatic updates.

Invest in automated security testing

Ill-willed hackers will always be one step ahead when it comes to finding new vulnerabilities, but leveraging automation in the form of testing of web applications and servers/networks will significantly increase the probability that you find the security hole before someone else does. Detectify is a tool for automated testing of web applications, and also for educating your developers about security.  

Leverage the crowd

There are plenty of organizations out there that are leveraging the hacking community when it comes to security (sounds counterintuitive, right?). In short, companies that take part in these bug bounty programs, allow people to hack their applications in exchange for an award. One example of this is 14-years old Karim who hacked Spotify and was awarded for it. Startups are usually really good at sharing knowledge between companies, which in my opinion should be no exception when it comes to security.

 

Summary

In the light of risks and suggested precautions listed above, it all comes down to taking care of the products and services that you have spent so much time building. You have put your soul into building these awesome products, and it really does suck if someone would come and ruin your product AND your brand reputation. For up-and-coming companies, it’s especially important to care for the customers you have, and a good way to achieving their trust is to have their and your security in mind when building these products.

With the risk of coming across as a bit cheesy: Rome wasn’t built in one day, and the same is true when it comes to security. There’s no quick fix that will take care of all your security problems, rather an ongoing process of learning and proactive thinking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


A SUP46 lovestory!

SUP46 is not only a place where the magic happens for startups now it´s officially also a place for romance!

In September last year at one of our Happy Hours, this time hosted together with our Global Friend, Balderton Capital, two of our guests found love. They want to be anonymous but we can tell that it was love at first sight!

 

 

They spent the entire evening at SUP46 in the corner where the table is in the picture. They talked and talked and talked and decided to meet again. Our romantic guy wanted to do something special for Valentines Day so he approached our Event Manager, Tatjana, and asked if he could host a dinner for his girl in the exact spot where they spent their first hours together five months ago (I have already asked if he has a brother!). Our event space was unfortunately already booked today so he had the dinner yesterday, February 13th, even better so she wouldn´t suspect anything. She thought she was going to SUP46 for a business meeting and not a private dinner with champagne, roses and wine.

SUP46 wishes the happy couple all the best in the future and we hope more people will fall in love at Regeringsgatan 65 in Stockholm!

 

 

 

 


A check-up with Peppy Pals – one of SUP46 first member companies

Peppy Pals released their first game Peppy Pals Farm in April 2014 which became an immediate success. Since then, they have released 4 paid apps and 1 free on all mobile platforms. By not using language in their apps they have an enormous opportunity of scale and our apps have been downloaded in over 150 countries and even been featured by Amazon and Google worldwide twice.

Peppy Pals joined SUP46 in 2013 amongst the first members. We wanted to check what has happened with them the last few years.

 


Bild: Beatrice Lundborg

Give us your elevator pitch

Rosie Linder, Founder and CEO Peppy Pals

“Peppy Pals develops fun and educational, award-winning apps and books that nurture children’s ages 2-8 Social & Emotional Intelligence (EQ) through story-telling. We don’t use text or language, score-stress or in-app purchases”.

 

What has happened with Peppy Pals since you left SUP46? 

Rosie Linder, Founder and CEO Peppy Pals

“Except releasing more products, we have attracted investment made by 2 of Sweden’s most renowned business angels, Hampus Jakobsson and Ludvig Linge. We are also very proud to have been selected as a Change Leader for Reach for Change, where our mission is to create a better life for children. We’ve also finished as first runner-up in TechCrunch pitch-off competition last year in Stockholm.

In March 2016 we signed our first B2B-deal with MAX Hamburger, one of the biggest fast-food chains in Sweden. The partnership demonstrates what can be achieved when larger companies, with their strengths and experiences, join forces with innovative and creative minds at startups.

In October 2016, Peppy Pals was ranked as one of the world’s most promising social enterprises by Ashoka and UBS Social Innovator.”

 

What were the best things being an SUP46 member?

Rosie Linder, Founder and CEO Peppy Pals

“The fact that you are sitting at SUP46 puts you in the spotlight. SUP46 is like a super-meeting place where you get to meet investors, journalists and other great companies every day. As an example, I met Amazon at SUP46 and thanks to that, they featured Peppy Pals two times worldwide.”

 

What do you think is the upside of being a woman in the male-dominated tech industry? 

Rosie Linder, Founder and CEO Peppy Pals

“I never think of my gender as an obstacle or an advantage. My experience is that many other male founders that I got to know at SUP46 were and still are extremely supportive and sharing, just like women are.

To me, the upside of being a woman without any previous experience of the tech industry is that I can inspire more women, more people, to pursue their dreams regardless of their background. Because entrepreneurship and tech is not about gender, it’s about passion and belief – and maybe a little bit of naivety.”

 

What´s your goals for Peppy Pals 2017?

Rosie Linder, Founder and CEO Peppy Pals

“Peppy Pals vision is to live in a world where every young person grows up practicing empathy and learn how to respect one another. Our goal 2017 is to reach even more children globally, focusing on our key markets Sweden, U.K and USA.

The World Economic Forum recently released a report stating that skills like empathy, collaboration and problem-solving (EQ) will be among the most required skills in 2020. At the same time, they announced that combining EdTech with EQ is the new vision for education.

Social skills are more requested now than ever before. Because there is no gene for empathy. Just like math, language or reading we need to start practice social skills early on. Peppy Pals wants to be the number 1 choice for practicing EQ in every home and school.”

 


Whats cooking in Linköpings start-up scene?

SUP46 have three, very successful, member companies from Linköping; Spotscale, AMRA and XMReality. Microsoft has recently acquired a tech start-up from Linköping called Simplygon, AMRA won DI Digital Start-up Tour 2016 and XMReality just raised 20MSEK pre-IPO. What´s cooking in Linköping? We have asked Spotscale and XMReality from the city to answer some questions about Linköpings start-up scene.

 

Why do you think Linköping has so many successful tech start-ups?

Ludvig Emgård, CEO Spotscale

“Linköping is a city packed with good reliable engineers, that deliver on their commitments. There is enough deep tech talent to recruit to produce high-tech, sustainable companies that are in it for the long run. SAAB, Ericsson, NFC, FOI, Sectra and Autoliv, together employs thousands of engineers, where a few is willing to take a new direction. The University is also outstanding when it comes to foster the very best computer scientists and hackers. In addition, people are likely to stay in their workplace for several years, and are not likely to move, once they have found a good work-life balance”.

Niklas Rengfors, Head of Sales & Marketing XMReality

“There´s a good situation and support for start-ups in Linköping, we have Lead, Mjärdevi Science Park and other clusters helping new companies getting to the market in a structured way. Linköping has a tradition of being frontrunner within visualization. Also, there are many times business angels with a large experience of building companies involved in some of the companies that give an extra power is my feeling. Having a University close makes it a good situation to take ideas to something concrete and to recruit new employees”.

 

Why are tech start-ups successful right now?

Ludvig Emgård, CEO Spotscale

“People have started to realize that one big value in companies is unique and state-of-the-art deep tech that differentiates from competitors”.

Niklas Rengfors, Head of Sales & Marketing XMReality

I think the trend around AR, 3D and other visualization is here right now. Things like Pokemon Go has made AR something everyone knows, also the digitalization and Industry 4.0 projects in the industry have a great impact as of now.

 

Why do you think an SUP46 membership is good for startups outside Stockholm?

Ludvig Emgård, CEO Spotscale

“Stockholm hosts most of the best investors and advisors. Many are former entrepreneurs themselves. At SUP46, and the Stockholm ecosystem, there is a critical mass of activities to attract international interest. This is harder for a smaller city like Linköping”.


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