Security: Year in review 2010

It certainly wasn't all bad news in the cyber crime space this year. Indeed, F-Secure's Mikko Hypponen said it was the best year yet for takedowns and arrests.

First off, arrests were made surrounding investigations into two giant botnets Bredolab and Mariposa, both of which had infected close to 50 million computers combined. The latter appears to have been taken out of contention altogether now, whilst the end of Bredolab appears to be nigh.

In the UK, there were a few big moments for law enforcement. Some teenagers were arrested in relation to an operation worth a whopping 7.8 million, whilst 19 were taken in on suspicion of using a Zeus Trojan to steal millions from UK banks. Another six arrests were made in August under suspicion of helping compromise 10,000 bank accounts.

A big deal

The biggest point of 2010 from within the industry was Intel's acquisition of McAfee. It cost a monolithic $7.68 billion and was proof the security market was now a really big deal.

Will the same McAfee product lines be maintained? Will Intel start to focus heavily on security by design? Well, we won't actually see anything material from the deal until next year and Intel has kept fairly quiet on what is coming. So, we will just have to wait and see whether the huge investment was worth it.

There was another big acquisition later in the year when HP splashed $1.5 billion on Arcsight. The pair promised to provide the kind of security solution to fit today's "modern enterprise." Again, we will just have to see what products do actually come out of the buy, but again there have been suggestions of bringing security into products rather than just working on boundary protection.

Expect some more big deals in 2011 and, of course, some equally massive security stories. Indeed, given the rate at which security has grown in stature this year, expect much more in the coming 12 months.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.