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Cybersecurity investment goes through the roof

2020 saw cybersecurity investment quadruple from US$500 million in 2019 to over US$2 billion in 2020 as companies around the world responded to the increasing cybersecurity challenges associated with remote workforces and the growing use of online channels. 

Corporates embracing the cloud

Businesses globally were challenged to provide their employees with controlled access to systems very quickly in 2020. This led to many that had clung to on-premise solutions to embrace cloud-based technologies in order to remain sustainable. It also led to increasing interest in cloud security solutions, as evidenced by WIX raising US$100 million in December to help it scale in the face of growing demand.

Total global investment activity in cybersecurity, chart

In 2020, the global pandemic drove interest in getting people to work from home without sacrificing controls. For many, it meant moving aggressively to cloud-based technologies. So, companies able to help with the rapid migration to the cloud, or with ensuring data could be monitored, encrypted and protected, were suddenly in demand. Many were gobbled up or funded, while other startups popped up all to help solve those needs.

Charles Jacco
Americas Cyber Security, Financial Services Leader,
Principal, KPMG in the US

Strengthening M&A activity

2020 saw increasing M&A activity across a number of dimensions, including corporates looking to expand their cybersecurity and data analytics capabilities, platform providers targeting innovative cybersecurity and fraud prevention focused firms to add to their security stacks, and security advisory firms looking to acquire hosted platforms. In H2’20, Mastercard acquired secure data sharing company Finicity for US$985 million.

Cybersecurity and fraud themes converging

Over 2020, there was increasing interest in solutions connecting user behavior, identity management, and fraud. Looking forward, these areas will continue to converge. This is expected to drive interest in technologies like AI, machine learning, and data analytics — and on solutions like correlation engines and orchestration.

Payments and network management hot areas of focus

The acceleration of digital trends increased focus on the security of payments processing activities, including the use of behavioral analysis tools. Given the increase in remote work, network management was also a critical area of focus. 

What to watch for in 2021

  • Strong focus on machine learning and data analytics-based cybersecurity technologies
  • Increasing interest in behavioral analytics in order to manage and prevent fraud
  • Further growth in investments related to cloud security
  • Companies looking to find the balance between privacy and security