Cybersecurity ETFs Set To Rally After A Global Cyberattack

The whole world was infected by a massive wave of cyberattacks on Friday that has locked up more than 200,000 computers paralyzing factories, hospitals, shops and schools in over 150 countries. The most infected countries were Russia, Ukraine, India and Taiwan.

The ransomware called "WannaCry," locks down all the files on an infected computer and asks the computer's administrator to pay $300 to $600 to regain control of them. The attack looks to spread through a weakness in Microsoft systems, particularly on outdated software like Windows XP or Windows Server 2003. It is being touted as the biggest ransomware attack in history.

Among the worst impacted by the historic attack was Britain's National Health Service, where 48 facilities had to suspend operations, and Russia’s ministry of the interior. Some major companies including FedEx Corp (FDX - Free Report) , Telefonica (TEF - Free Report) , Portugal Telecom and China National Petroleum were also hit hard by a massive attack. Some of the other victims include German railway company Deutsche Bahn, and German automakers Nissan Motor and Renault.

The malaise is expected to aggravate this week as employees return to work, turn on their computers and check e-mails. As per cyber security analysts, more than 1.3 million computer systems are still vulnerable to WannaCry cyberattacks. Law enforcement and intelligence agencies stated that the worst might be yet to come as a number of cyberattacks using the "WannaCry" virus continues to grow.

Given this, cybersecurity stocks are poised to rally in the coming days. Investors could tap this opportune moment in the basket form through two ETFs, namely PureFunds ISE Cyber Security ETF (HACK - Free Report) and First Trust Nasdaq Cybersecurity ETF (CIBR - Free Report) .

HACK in Focus

The fund offers exposure to those companies that ensure the safety of computer hardware, software, networks and fight against any sort of cyber malpractices. It tracks the ISE Cyber Security Index, holding 35 securities in its basket with none accounting for more than 4.91% share. In terms of country exposure, U.S. firms take the top spot at 75%, followed by Israel (11%), the United Kingdom (6%), Japan (5%), South Korea (2%), the Netherlands (2%), and Sweden (1%).

The fund charges 60 bps in annual fees and sees volume of 349,000 shares a day on average. It has amassed about $969 million in its asset base.

CIBR in Focus

This ETF has accumulated nearly $220 million in its asset base and charges 60 bps in annual fees. It trades in a light average daily volume of around 81,000 shares. The fund follows the Nasdaq CTA Cybersecurity Index, which measures the performance of companies engaged in the cyber security segment of the technology and industrials sectors. In total, the product holds 30 stocks in its basket with each accounting for no more than 6.62% of assets.

Like HACK, American firms account for 73% of CIBR while Israel, United Kingdom, Ireland and many others make up for a single-digit allocation each.

Leveraged Play

Most aggressive investors seeking to make big profit in a short span should consider leveraged ETF Direxion Daily Cyber Security & IT Bull Shares (HAKK - Free Report) . The fund seeks to deliver twice (2x) the daily performance of the ISE Cyber Security Index. It is an unpopular and illiquid option in the leveraged space with AUM of $2.4 million and average daily volume of 1,000 shares. Expense ratio comes in at 0.80% 

Disclosure: None.

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