Motley Fool Australia

ASX banks are facing millions of cyber attacks each day

Man on laptop with cybersecurity symbols
Image source: Getty Images

The big ASX banks are seeing millions of cyber attacks each day.

That’s according to the boss of the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ) institutional bank, Mark Whelan, who was talking at the Australian Financial Review’s Business Summit.

Mr Whelan said that ANZ alone sees 8 million to 10 million cyber attacks every day on the bank’s system. He believes that each ASX bank would be seeing similar things. That means that the other banks of Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA), Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) and National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) could all be seeing the same thing.

One of the main ways that the ASX bank is trying to help the situation is by teaching staff and customers about cyber crime, with the bank practicing sending phishing attempts to staff.

We also learned at the AFR summit that Westpac is seeing a growing number of cyber attacks, so it’s putting more money and people to defend against attacks.

Mr King said:

You’ve got to think about who you are hiring because they try and get in through your employees.

Cyber attacks are happening all over the world. There was reportedly an attack on Australia’s federal parliament IT services.

The diversified media business Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Ltd (ASX: NEC) has also experienced a cyber attack.

In-fact, there have been many high-profile cyber attacks in recent years that led to many millions of accounts being exposed.

What can be done about these attacks?

It’s good to know how to protect your own personal details and accounts where you can, but in terms of these breaches there’s not much we can personally do.

However, there are a number of global cybersecurity businesses that aim to protect businesses, governments and organisations against attacks.

If you want exposure to these cybersecurity businesses, then Betashares Global Cybersecurity ETF (ASX: HACK) is an exchange-traded fund (ETF) provided by BetaShares. It’s invested in both global players as well as emerging companies in the sector.

It’s invested in businesses like Cisco Systems, Accenture, Splunk, Zscaler, Crowdstrike, VMWare, Leidos, Juniper Networks, F5 Networks and Akamai Technologies.

BetaShares says that with cybercrime on the rise, the demand for cybersecurity services is expected to grow strongly for the foreseeable future. Since inception in August 2016, the Betashares Global Cybersecurity ETF has delivered a return of an average of 19.2% per annum.

Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) deputy chair John Lonsdale explained to the AFR Summit that cyber attacks have risen since COVID-19 and that the digitisation of the economy, particularly people working from home, is posing risks and issues.

Where to invest $1,000 right now

When investing expert Scott Phillips has a stock tip, it can pay to listen. After all, the flagship Motley Fool Share Advisor newsletter he has run for more than eight years has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.*

Scott just revealed what he believes are the five best ASX stocks for investors to buy right now. These stocks are trading at dirt-cheap prices and Scott thinks they are great buys right now.

*Returns as of February 15th 2021

Motley Fool contributor Tristan Harrison has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of BETA CYBER ETF UNITS. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

Related Articles…

Latest posts by Tristan Harrison (see all)