Ransomware attacks causes cyber security stocks to rise

Ransomware

The WannaCry hack affected more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries last week (not talking about Petya). It has made the cyber security stocks to boom during this week – all for a ransomware!  The attack started on Friday, May 12 and had fully spread by Monday, May 15.  This has spurred companies’ interest in IT security, with cyber security firms watching how their stock market values climb steeply.

Neil Campling, head of technology research at Northern Trust says that:“these attacks help focus the minds of chief technology officers across corporations to make sure security protocols are up to date. You often see bookings growth at cyber security companies as a result.”

Value is going to rise

Sophos is a cloud network security specialist who provides their service to the NHS.  Their value has risen by 8%.  Their shares have actually been performing well due to the increased need for cyber protection.

In Europe, specifically in London, Sophos jumped over 7% while NCC Group, a security firm, rose to 2.7 percent.

U.S. companies also saw a sharp rise, with FireEye’s prices going up 7%, Symantec climbed up more than 3% and Palo Alto Networks increased 2.7%.  The Cybersecurity ETF also saw their stock value increase by 3.3%.

Analysts at Wedbush have written in a research that this “ransomware” attack would “refocus IT attention on updating security infrastructure and procedures”.

The success of the WannaCry hack has brought about certain comments, especially regarding the government’s ability to secure “cyberweapons” from being stolen.

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“The attacks raise significant questions about whether or not countries that are developing and stockpiling cyber weapons can do more to protect those tools from being stolen and turned against their own population.” Thomas Fitzgerald, associate fund manager at EdenTree Investment Management, said. “The WannaCry attack is likely to be a catalyst for more of these types of cyber-attacks from copycat criminal organizations.”

Companies that will see the benefits of more government investment in security are General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman, according to analysts at Bernstein.

Everyone felt the effects of the cyber attack until Tuesday.  Hospitals are still recovering by rescheduling. People have to go to an A&E only if absolutely necessary.

How can I protect myself?

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