by Vikram Sharma
Puzzles can be deceptively simple, if you know how to approach them. Techpreneur Sagar Honnungar, the co-founder of Hakimo has what it takes to solve even the most complex ones. In school, Sagar Honnungar loved solving puzzles. That childhood hobby continued to inspire him, even his work today could be described as solving a mountain of puzzles, as he and his team go about securing big enterprises, including airports and multinational companies. Hakimo, where Sagar is both co-founder and CTO, is a California-based company that acts as an AI assistant for GSOC (Global Security Operations Centre) operators in big enterprises by eliminating most nuisance alarms and enabling them to prioritise high severity alerts using cutting-edge AI solutions.
“This significantly reduces the chances of a real break-in going unnoticed by security operators in the midst of false alarms,” explains Sagar, in conversation with Global Indian. The company’s product won the Judges Choice award across all categories in the New Products Showcase at ISC West conference this year — a proud moment for the Hakimo team.
Growing up in Bengaluru, the garden city and Silicon Valley of India, Sagar did his schooling until Class X at S. Cadambi Vidya Kendra, and then went to National Public School Rajajinagar until Class XII. “I had always been the class topper and was taught to aim high in life,” recalls Sagar, who was strong in science and mathematics. His father Kashinath Honnungar was an electronics engineer (now retired), mother Sanjivani Honnungar is a home-maker.
As a child, he wanted to be an astronaut, for he was fascinated by the vast expanse of the sky and space. But when he was first taught Java in high school, Sagar discovered he was that quite good at programming and fell in love with it.
Having performed well in the IIT-JEE examination, Sagar went to IIT Madras for his undergraduate studies. “I learnt to adjust to new environments and live independently. The peer group was undoubtedly the best,” smiles Sagar, who maintained a stellar academic record.
He first visited the US in the summer of 2015 as a Viterbi-India scholar to complete a research internship at USC (University of Southern California). Towards the final year of his undergrad, the techpreneur developed an interest in computer vision and computational imaging. He completed his B Tech in Electrical Engineering in 2016 and ranked second in the entire department.
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