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MITRE and Prelude Announce Partnership to Offer Advanced Cybersecurity for Small and Mid-sized Organizations

New tools deliver threat-informed defense against cyber adversaries.

Bedford, Mass., and McLean, Va., June 14, 2021—Small and mid-sized organizations often lack the budget and know-how to use advanced cybersecurity tools. They also struggle to hire the highly qualified staff needed to operate them, making it difficult to protect themselves against sophisticated adversaries. In recent attacks, like SolarWinds, adversaries gained access to large, well-known organizations by initially targeting the vulnerable smaller businesses in their supply chain.

MITRE and Prelude are partnering to close this gap. MITRE and Prelude are using previously unlicensed intellectual property from MITRE’s CALDERA™, an open-source project used to automate adversary behavior, as they collaborate on product development, research, and training with Prelude Operator, a free, easy-to-use desktop application. Prelude Operator enables even small businesses to evaluate and protect themselves against sophisticated adversaries.

“Security is critical to every part of the infrastructure that individuals and organizations, from government agencies to Fortune 500 firms to small and mid-sized IT vendors, rely on,” said Chris Folk, MITRE’s director of cyber policy and partnerships. “Providers of that infrastructure are now connected in ways that require making advanced security knowledge available to all organizations, not just those who have significant resources. As part of our not-for-profit mission, we aim to improve security for everyone, and that begins with collaborative defense.”

Prelude Operator builds on the research originally developed in CALDERA, and the collaboration with Prelude expands the use of previously unlicensed MITRE intellectual property.

“MITRE partners with a variety of organizations across multiple disciplines, and our partnership with Prelude demonstrates our commitment to address our nation’s greatest challenges,” said Barry Costa, MITRE’s director of strategic partnerships. The partnership enables further joint research to be made widely available to improve the realism of adversary emulations based on real world data, while making these capabilities accessible to organizations outside of those who traditionally have large budgets for information security.

“The vast majority of advanced security tools and products are only accessible to the largest global organizations,” said Spencer Thompson, Prelude CEO. “This partnership with MITRE will help accelerate the development of a more diverse cybersecurity workforce and thereby help to raise the collective cybersecurity ‘floor’ across the nation.”

As part of their joint efforts, MITRE and Prelude are also working together to develop Cyber Futures—an experiential summer student internship program focused on training the next generation of cyber defender. Established through collaboration with several Minority Serving Institutions (MSI), the program aims to establish and grow a diverse cybersecurity workforce talent pipeline for national security organizations and the supporting ecosystem. Interns will receive hands-on training through Operator, Prelude’s training platform, as well as from MITRE subject matter experts. The 10-week program will culminate in a capstone project, solving a cybersecurity challenge for federal project sponsors.

Other capabilities that MITRE has developed and made freely available to help make cyberspace safer for all include MITRE ATT&CK®, an open-source knowledgebase of adversary behavior; the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) program, which identifies, defines, and catalogs publicly disclosed cybersecurity vulnerabilities; and Common Weakness Enumeration (CWE™), a list of software and hardware weakness types that serves as a common language, measuring stick for security tools, and baseline for weakness identification, mitigation, and prevention efforts.


MITRE’s mission-driven teams are dedicated to solving problems for a safer world. Through our public-private partnerships and federally funded R&D centers, we work across government and in partnership with industry to tackle challenges to the safety, stability, and well-being of our nation.

For more information about a potential partnership with your organization or licensing MITRE IP, please contact the MITRE Technology Transfer Office.

About Prelude

Prelude Research is a for-profit, mission-driven corporation focused on bringing advanced security to all organizations. Prelude’s first product, Operator, is a platform that brings adversarial attack technology to security engineers. Prelude is backed by leading security & enterprise investors, including: Four Rivers, IA Ventures, Rise of the Rest, General Advance, New Ground Ventures, and Jerry Murdock.

MITRE Media Contact: Jeremy Singer,

Prelude Media Contact: Penny Tiglias,