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ASX listed cyber security stocks

The scale of the cyber-security problem is immense, with cyber-crime costing $US1 trillion in 2018 alone, and forecasts suggesting that losses will grow to $US6 trillion as soon as 2021.

In Australia, the government says cyber-security incidents cost Australian businesses up to $29 billion per year, with cybercrime events affecting almost one in three Australian adults in 2018.

Chinese tech giant Huawei recently admitted that it endures about a million cyber-attacks on its computers and networks every day. Cyber-security consultant Tony Barnes, director of Cyber Research Group, told me recently, “When you switch servers on, they’re like magnets in the way they attract attacks.” Barnes said that showing companies the scale of the constant attacks on them is a penny-dropping moment: “When people visualise it, it scares the pants off them,” he said.


And what really worries the cyber-security community is that innovation in cybersecurity is falling behind innovation by the global hacker community.

“As long as humans remain predisposed to click on interesting emails, rely on easy (or no) passwords, or browse to places we shouldn’t, the hackers will have the edge,” says Saumitra Das, chief technology officer and co-founder of deep-learning cyber-security platform Blue Hexagon.


Of course, cyber-security is a great business opportunity for those with the products and systems that can help governments, companies, organisations and individuals get ahead of the bad guys. According to the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network, the global cyber-security market is currently worth about US$131 billion, and is set to increase to US$248 billion by 2026.

Looking at the Australian stock market, though, you would not know that cyber-security is a growth business.


The ASX does host cyber-security companies, but sadly, it is a desert in terms of investment success.

Is this because of the technology offerings being lacking in some way, or the relative lack of specialist investors to pick-up on the opportunities being presented, and give them some market support and impetus? That appears to be a big problem.


For example, the highly promising Australian cyber-security firm VeroGuard Systems, which says it is the “first and only platform to make indisputable verification possible in online use,” is considering an offshore listing, to maximise its likelihood of reaching the specialist investors that would be the cornerstones of its share register – although the company’s hardware security modules (which make possible the ultra-secure authentication, encryption and communications at both ends of every online transaction) will be manufactured in Adelaide.

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