Endgame CEO Nate Fick thinks the United States is underprepared for the imminent threat of cyberattacks.
"If we're going to talk about a policy point, there's a real deterrence failure in cybersecurity," Fick told "Mad Money" host Jim Cramer on Monday.
"The Russians interfered in the U.S. election via cyber means, because if they'd done it by sending agents into our polling places, we would've responded," he continued. "And our adversaries know that we aren't organized to respond yet digitally."
Endgame is a privately held cybersecurity company whose platform detects, prevents, responds to and automatically hunts cyberattackers on companies' servers.
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Fick, a former Marine Corps officer, said Endgame's automated hunting service helped facilitate a recent partnership with consulting giant Accenture, and enables one of its top clients, the U.S. Air Force, to implement cutting-edge hunting tactics in its networks.
"There's a misconception out there that the government is somehow behind in cybersecurity," Fick said. "In fact, there are parts of the government that are really out there on the vanguard, and the Air Force is one of them."
Yet what many know as the "election hack," or the Russian-led hack and release of information from the Democratic National Committee's servers in the months leading up to the 2016 election, rattled the notion that the U.S. government is fully prepared to handle cyber threats.
Fick said that all of Endgame's testing suggested its platform could have prevented the hack, but there is no way to know for certain.
Following that, knowing where an attack is coming from is especially difficult in cyber, where assailants can bounce their attack through obscure servers on different continents to conceal where it originated.
"Attribution is hard in this space," he said. "And what we find is most of our commercial customers don't really care where the attack came from, they just want to stop it."
Despite the risks associated with cyber, the CEO's advice for businesses seeking to up their cybersecurity barriers was to become more value-based, rather than risk-averse.
"Cyber risk is an enterprise risk," Fick said. "Incorporate it into an overall enterprise risk management framework, and make a value-based decision on where you should spend."
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