No silver bullet to fight security threats - Check Point

Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:00am IST

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(Reuters) - Internet and network security provider Check Point Software Technology warned there was no permanent fix to ward off the increasing threat from hackers and malware - a situation that will help the company thrive.

"There's a revolution in the threat landscape," Check Point president Amnon Bar-Lev told Reuters in an interview on Tuesday.

"Threats are happening everywhere from everywhere," Bar-Lev said, but added that, "one thing that has changed for good is that the level of awareness has gone up."

Defense contractors such as Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) have been among the high-profile victims of cyberattacks. Others include Google Inc (GOOG.O), Citigroup Inc (C.N) and Nasdaq OMX Group Inc (NDAQ.O).

The director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Robert Mueller, said recently that cyber attacks against government agencies and businesses will surpass terrorism as a danger to the United States.

Check Point, one of the world's leading Internet security companies, offers firewall products such as Zonealarm for PCs and its software blade architecture for enterprises, which are independent, modular software blocks that prevent network intrusion.

It also just launched its anti-bot software blade that finds bots, which are hard-to-detect pieces of software that invade networks and lets an attacker send emails, attack a website or steal information.

"Every single company, where we installed the anti-bot blade had bots," Bar-Lev said.

As attacks and malware evolve, so must the company that sells products to prevent attacks.

"It's an ongoing game, there is no silver bullet," Bar-Lev said, adding that the company had a group of analysts that did nothing but monitor how hacking attacks and malware are evolving.

A computer scientist by training, Bar-Lev said Check Point did not hire hackers or test hacking skills outside of the company lab.

Bar-Lev said Check Point's customers range from governments to Fortune 100 companies to individual consumers, but he sees particular growth in the financial and services sector.

"The sweet spot for us will be enterprise, high-end, financial services and service providers," he said, adding that security costs usually make up 4 percent to 6 percent of IT budgets.

Bar-Lev joined Check Point in 2005 after selling the company he founded - Xpert Integrated Systems - and traveling through Canada in a motor home with his family.

Check Point competes with the security divisions of Cisco and Juniper, but according to Bar-Lev, the company has been winning market share from the larger rivals.

Even if the customers used Cisco or Juniper products for other areas, they turned to Check Point for security, he said.

"We are focussed on security and only security," Bar-Lev added.

(Reporting By Nicola Leske; editing by Andre Grenon)

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