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If you’re on the lookout for a breakout growth opportunity, it’s important to look where others aren’t. And, in that case, it’s hard to argue against the exploding potential of preventing cybercrime.

Although estimates differ, cybercrime is an undeniably lucrative field. An article in Forbes reported that the overall cost of cybercrime can range from $100 billion to upwards of $400 billion a year. Further, Juniper Research speculated that data breaches will pick businesses’ and consumers’ pockets to the tune of $2.1 trillion globally by 2019.

Happily, there’s a more legitimate upside to the pervasive spread of cybercrime—the varied business opportunities for those interested in preventing such attacks.

Fighting Back: The Lucrative Possibilities

If cybercrime holds the potential of a big payoff, so, too, does the field of cybersecurity. One estimate suggests that the cybersecurity industry will top $200 billion in the United States alone by 2021.

One obvious growth area is professional services—specifically, businesses geared to helping organizations of all sorts implement and operate effective cybersecurity measures and procedures. These could include consulting, training and education; support and maintenance; design and integration; and risk and threat assessment. Further, these sorts of services could be focused on more specific types of security, including network, endpoint, application and cloud security.

Here are six specific types of businesses that stand to profit from the battle against cybercrime:

  • Virtual Data Rooms—These are highly secure cloud-based locations that allow businesses to store and access information about private negotiations, mergers and acquisitions, property transactions and even intellectual property rights.
  • Identity Theft Protection—These businesses employ software and analytics to identify suspicious credit card activity and other uses of personal identification data. These businesses will be in particular demand as online retail activity continues to increase, particularly with regard to mobile applications.
  • Advanced Penetration Testing—Even if you have a cybersecurity protection system in place, you may still have open doors that allow hackers to get in and do damage. For example, hackers can attack security cameras, door locks, copiers, scanners, HVAC systems and physical assets and leverage them for access to valuable corporate information. Like an iceberg, most vulnerabilities are hidden from automated and compliance-driven vulnerability scanning and penetration testing. That’s where advanced penetration testing comes in. One such company, HorneCyber, uses highly trained experts to test every possible point of entry, and if they find a problem, they show your IT team how to close the open door to your data.
  • Artificial Intelligence—Some companies are employing artificial intelligence to detect unusual activity on client networks. One such company, Darktrace, uses AI algorithms created by mathematicians from the University of Cambridge that mimic the human immune system to identify issues on networks of all types and sizes.
  • Network monitoring—Some companies offer ongoing monitoring systems that allow companies to, in effect, see whoever happens to be on their network at any given time. For instance, Tanium sells systems to make it easier for firms and governments to keep track of which computer hackers have infiltrated and other possible security breaches.
  • Niche Security—Certain companies have targeted specific areas of cybersecurity. For instance, Area 1’s specialty is defending against phishing activities (using fraudulent emails in an attempt to obtain personal financial information). By contrast, Lookout’s area of focus is mobile phone security.

The Human Factor

With all these and other companies springing up to combat cybercrime, it raises the question of why data breaches and other intrusions continually hit the front pages. One short answer is the role we as humans play in the process—specifically, our propensity to downplay the risks of cybercrime and, as a result, to have shoddy security habits that entice cybercriminals to keep at it.

With that in mind, it’s essential that organizations understand that they will be attacked, and it’s better to anticipate and pre-solve a predictable problem than react to it after you’re hacked.

Everyone is at Risk

It’s time to take the initiative to make cybersecurity everyone’s business. Develop a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy, and make certain everyone in your organization is on board. And if you need further help, look to companies that specialize in assisting others with staying safe. They’re out there, and their numbers are constantly growing.

What does the resiliency of cybercrimes mean for us? It means it’s time to anticipate better.

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