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Emre Koksal wins Columbus Inventor of Year award

Last night in downtown Columbus, Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Professor Emre Koksal received the 2019 BizTech "Inventor of the Year" award from Columbus Business First, the business news and information authority in Central Ohio. He is cofounder and CEO of cybersecurity startup DAtAnchor.

According to Koksal, the company’s transparent encryption technology solution empowers businesses to have full control of their data, no matter where it is accessed. It embeds governance rules into key management in such a way that, even if data is moved, these rules seamlessly move with it. An organization can create multiple context factors, such as user credentials, location, content of data, and access modality for their users to access the data in a fully transparent fashion.

“We make it easy for users by providing seamless encryption anywhere,” Koksal said.

DAtAnchor’s solution automates data governance, which is handled via manual procedures in most businesses. It also provides a complete data trail, substantially reducing the overhead in meeting numerous compliance regulations on data security, including HIPAA and GDPR. The company’s initial clients come from a wide variety of sectors including legal, financial services and healthcare.

In February, DAtAnchor announced it had raised $1.25 million in a funding round led by Columbus-based Ohio Innovation Fund.

Ohio State spinout company Nikola Labs won "Outstanding Innovation" at this year's BizTech Awards. ECE faculty Chi-Chih Chen is cofounder and chief scientific officer and Professor Robert Lee serves as a director and founding partner on the company's Advisory Board, which also includes alumnus Rodolfo Bellesi.  

Columbus Business First launched the annual BizTech Awards five years ago in order to recognize promising startups, entrepreneurs and innovations in the city. Koksal was among 18 other organizations and individuals to win an award in one of the nine different categories, including The Innovation Studio at the Ohio State University College of Nursing (nonprofit of the year).