Check Point's Shwed: Cyber attacks can be prevented

Gil Shwed

Check Point reported strong second quarter results today.

The Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: CHKP) share price is flying high at $116, reflecting an $18.9 billion market cap for the company. With sentiment favoring the company, Check Point today reported good results for the second quarter, beating both the analysts' revenue and profit forecasts and the upper limit of its own forecasts. Revenue totaled $459 million, 8% more than in the corresponding quarter last year.

Net profit totaled $188 million, up 13.6%, and non-GAAP net profit, which excludes various accounting expenses, reached $212 million, up 11.3%. Profit per share was $1.26, $0.04 higher than the analysts' forecasts.

"We look at all the financial indices, and they all look excellent. The results are beyond everyone's expectations," Check Point cofounder and CEO Gil Shwed said today at a press conference in Tel Aviv.

Shwed spoke at length about the leading trends in cyber security. "The second quarter was very interesting in this context," he said. "There was an attack on May 12, in which malware spread within a few hours, and shut down hospitals in the UK, factories in France, and an oil company in China. You don't see things like that every day. It spread quickly, passed through the Internet, and used technologies developed by countries. The hackers caused damage that the entire world is talking about. A month later, there was another attack, which began in Ukraine on June 27 and shut down almost the whole country: its airport, metro, and electric company. It didn't stop in Ukraine; it attacked 65 countries all over the world."

Shwed added, "It's known that attacks can occur, and very sophisticated weapons are reaching hackers throughout the world. We've been saying this for a long time. Our message may sound very natural, but it's not necessarily a message according to which our industry is working. We say that it's possible to prevent these attacks. Customers tell us, 'Everyone tells us that attacks will happen in any case, and it's impossible to defend against them; let's deal with the damage.' We say that's too late. The time from the moment that the attack enters a company until it attacks all the computers is three seconds. Tools for handling an attack after this are ineffective."

Shwed said that Check Point had launched an architecture called Infinity designed to stop the next attack. It contains sharing of information between systems, and has preventative technologies in every element of the system. "More than 93% of companies don't use these tools, which already exist. The future of the attacks is already here, but the next attack can be prevented. We've seen hospitals and factories shut down by cyberattacks that probably weren't the most sophisticated thing in existence," Shwed said.

Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - - on July 20, 2017

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2017

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