In college, I had a friend whose father was an aeronautical engineer and who liked to say that whatever improvements they could make in terms of avionics and flight control systems, they couldn't do as much about "the squishy pink thing at the front". In other words, human error is always a factor in complex systems, and that applies to network security as well. While firms like Palo Alto (NYSE:PANW) and Check Point (NASDAQ:CHKP) do a lot to secure enterprises from an array of threats, companies are still vulnerable to an employee clicking on a malware attachment or inadvertently (or deliberately) sending out privileged information.
That's where Proofpoint (NASDAQ:PFPT) comes in. This company has developed a suite of cloud-based products to help protect enterprises from email-based threats, targeted attacks, and data loss, as well as assist in archiving and governance. These shares are not cheap, not even on the basis of growth stock norms, but the company is gaining share, expanding its addressable market, and starting to see margin leverage.
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Proofpoint Growing On The Back Of Human Error