Cybersecurity Outlook 2017: Companies Crusade Against Cybercrimes

- December 22nd, 2016

Events from 2016 will inform those of 2017, as hackers shift gears in online attacks that are becoming more and more sophisticated.

The Investing News Network published an earlier version of this article which contained factual errors that we wish to correct. The following full text of the article contains the correct information, specifically on the cybercrime damages forecast, as well as proper attribution to the source, Cybersecurity Ventures. The Investing News Network regrets the publication of wrong information and apologizes to Cybersecurity Ventures for any inconvenience it may have caused.
— Pia Rivera, Content Producer and Editor, Investing News Network
Cybercrime damages are forecasted to grow to $6 trillion a year by 2021, according to the Cybersecurity Ventures cybercrime report. Further to that, the Cybersecurity Market Report projects that global spending on cybersecurity products and services will be in excess of $1 trillion from 2017 to 2021. 
Indeed, 2016’s biggest news in the cybersecurity front show why this sector is growing. To name a few: Yahoo! first confirmed a data breach in September, and another one in December; Muddy Waters Capital accused St. Jude Medical’s (NYSE:STJ) cardiac devices of cybersecurity vulnerability; and Russian hackers breached the Democratic National Committee’s computer network.
In this article, CEOs and experts, in emails to INN, share their thoughts on cybersecurity and the direction the market will take in 2017.

2016: Increased need for computer security dominated the news

Sensitive information was targeted at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center. Tony Gauda, CEO of ThinAir, likens these attacks to an epidemic. The “ransomware attacks that plagued the healthcare industry” forced this Los Angeles hospital to pay up in February. The hackers returned their valuable information for $17,000, in bitcoins.
Gauda calls healthcare records “the crown jewel of personally identifiable information”. Vishal Gupta, CEO of Seclore, highlights a worrying statistic from a poll by Healthcare IT News and HIMSS Analytics Quick HIT Survey: Ransomware. 75 percent of hospitals were vulnerable to ransomware attacks and had been hit by one.
In May, CNBC reported on the migration from magnetic strip to chip cards and the resultant rise in consumer theft. In 2016, $4 billion in credit card fraud was forecast and that number increases to $20 billion by 2020.
In the summer US intelligence decided Russian based hackers had gained access to the Democratic National Committee servers and leaked emails. Many believed the leaks derailed Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Gauda even talks of a phenomenal “wave of politically motivated data leaks that occurred during the run up to the election”.
Yahoo’s (NASDAQ:YHOO) year has gone from bad to worse, with hacks uncovered at different times, relating to separate occassions – one in August 2013 and one in late 2014. The most recent discovery shows over one billion user accounts were affected – a record number.

Looking forward: Companies on the cutting edge as we turn the corner into 2017

These incidences will lead many to seek help from pure-play companies dedicated to the cyber sphere.
One such is Imperva (NYSE:IMPV), who protect cloud data. Imperva are one of the largest pure-play cybersecurity companies on the BVP Cyber index. They are expected by analysts to report $0.29 earnings per-share in fiscal year 2018.
Steve Morgan, founder and Editor-In-Chief at Cybersecurity Ventures, has a top tip in cybersecurity firm Mimecast (NASDAQ:MIME). If you’re the sort of investor to invest in a person then they “have one of the longest standing CEOs in the tech industry who has proven he has the right vision and execution strategy to grow in a highly competitive space.” Mimecast “may reach a billion dollar market cap by the second or third quarter of 2017.”

Investor takeaway

The NASDAQ CTA Cybersecurity Index (INDEXNASDAQ:NQCYBR) has performed well this year. Year-to-date it has gained 12.17 percent with a year high in November of $953.33 per share.
Reports abound and predictions are in: 2016 was a landmark year for the industry and will occupy a prominent position in 2017, as industries across the board increasingly direct resources to this area. Investors who capitalize on companies at the forefront can stay in the loop for the foreseeable future.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Technology for real-time news updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Emma Harwood, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article. 

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