Currently, the developed world walks at the pace of the Internet. At the individual level we have changed many of our consumer habits and carry out daily activities through the network, and at the corporate level, it is unthinkable the operation of a business or a large company without a computer platform on which to develop their activity. It is clear that a globalized world benefits companies, individuals, and society in general, but it is essential to identify the negative connotations and their risks. Now that everything is at the click of a mouse and that a lot of personal and private information is exposed to social networks, the question we ask ourselves is: are we safe?

Looking back, when we talked about security, we were referring to protecting our loved ones, or material goods, from real estate property, confidential reports, or incomprehensible files if we talk about work. Now we are stopping to store things physically, space is valuable, and we begin to trust platforms, such as the so-called “clouds,” from storage of our photographs, to the storage of all types of information and business management. More and more companies are allocating resources to computerize their products and services. But what happens when the “cloud” loses its security? … The best example “Apple” technological and innovative company, which has been recently harmed by this cloud technical insecurity (Icloud), combined with the ease of access to user passwords, which were of relative “little difficulty.” These users, some famous, have been affected by the theft of information and private images. This fact demonstrates the need to reinforce our security in the face of the new change in storage trend

On many occasions, users are confident in our relationship with technology and many hackers use social engineering (cheating someone to get information through specific doses of psychology) and the theory that “Internet users are the weakest link” to take away confidential information.

For example, there is a practice called phishing in which one of its modalities is that the user indiscriminately receives massive emails from alleged banking entities repeatedly asking for passwords and account numbers. As technology advances, the mechanisms to obtain our information are increasingly sophisticated

That is why we need to protect ourselves. An antivirus and a firewall (firewalls) are no longer enough. Just as we ensure our most precious assets, why are we going to skimp on computer security? If a company needs a financial advisor, why not also have a computer consultant?

Among the dangers that we can find, are the DNS services attack , which in simple terms consist of a person wanting to access a page (for example Google) and the user to think that he is on Google, but he is really on another page where the information thief can obtain from your searches, personal data and even passwords, and denial of service attacks, services that offer real criminal organizations to boycott a web page. For example, If there are two companies in the same sector facing each other. One can contract the services of these organizations so that at a particular moment, the page of the competition fails or collapses.

The significant advances will come with the revolution and implementation of the IPV6 PROTOCOL. Although it is already in place, it will take a few years to establish itself fully, but many experts say that it will be fundamental in technological development. It consists of a communication system that will improve security protocols. We think that companies that are developing this communication system can have a competitive advantage in the future.

CISCO, one of the most important IT companies in the USA, prepares a security report every year. In one of this year, the following aspects stood out:

  • Greater sophistication and proliferation of the threat landscape.
  • The greater complexity of threats and solutions due to the rapid growth of the adoption of smart mobile devices and cloud computing that provide a higher attack surface than ever before.
  • Cybercriminals have learned that harnessing the power of the Internet infrastructure yields many more benefits than only gaining access to computers or individual devices.

As Key Conclusions We Highlight:

  • Vulnerabilities and threats, in general, reached their highest level since the initial monitoring began in May 2000.
  • The report shows a shortage of more than one million security professionals worldwide in 2014.
  • 30 of the world’s largest multinationals generated traffic to websites that harbored malware.
  • Specific business sectors, such as the chemical industry and the electronic manufacturing industry, historically have high rates of malware. In 2012 and 2013, there was a significant growth of malware in the agricultural and mining industry (previously they were relatively low-risk sectors). The malware also continued to increase in the energy, oil, and gas sectors. The telecommunications sector and the financial sector are also beginning to rebound.

We believe that global companies explicitly dedicated to information security, such as Kaspersky, Symantec, and the Cisco above can have significant future growth. In Spain, F5 and Panda stand out.

The evolution and computer sophistication will increase with time, and therefore, we must protect our intangible assets as they take on more weight in personal life every day. As for companies, and especially companies in the financial sector, they have to allocate resources to develop sophisticated security systems to protect their customers.

For all this, at AFS Finance Advisors EAFI we recommend investing in the medium term in companies that are linked to the IT security sector. We believe that this need will grow with the passage of time and the evolution of companies that develop security products and services, will increase their sales and profits in the coming years.