Cybersecurity is unique, in that it is the only sub-industry of the IT sector driven by adversarial forces. It's not hard to see why, when one discovers that ransomware is more profitable than cocaine trafficking in the 1990s, but with negligible risks. The reward-to-risk of cybercrime is such that adversaries are only going to grow in number and sophistication.
Societal and technological evolution is making opportunities for bad actors more plentiful at the same time. Distributed workforces, dispersed IT infrastructures, rapid software release cycles, more connected devices, and more data, collectively give cyber criminals ample opportunity to launch successful attacks.
While these catalysts for attack expand, the factors for defense are deteriorating. Worldwide, there are about 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs, leading to unmanageable workloads for SecOps teams, which ultimately leads to more mistakes, vulnerabilities, and oversights. The talent shortage is greatly exacerbated by orgs' own technical cybersecurity debt. Setting policies for 50-100 different security solutions is unsustainable and fraught with risk, but this is what the typical enterprise is currently asking its SecOps team to do.
Such a treacherous landscape for all types and sizes of orgs, makes for a breeding ground of innovation for new and better security platforms, approaches, and philosophies. More niche solutions, despite being best-in-class for what they do, are not going to mitigate org-wide risks and improve org-wide security postures. They are only going to add to the problem. This is why vendors spearheading new architectural and philosophical approaches, infused with advanced machine learning techniques, will receive the most demand in the coming years.
Investors should consider cybersecurity companies that are pioneers in Zero Trust, intelligent networking, autonomous software, AI/ML-based alerts and insights, and preventative security. Such technologies, driven by new philosophical approaches, have the best chance of alleviating the pain points orgs are currently facing.