As Biden Rolls out New Cybersecurity Mandates, Look to 'UCYB'

On Tuesday, the Biden administration implemented new cybersecurity requirements for U.S. pipeline operators, according to the Wall Street Journal

The measures are to help protect against increasing incidents of ransomware and disruptive hacking, such as with the Colonial Pipeline attack that shut the major fuel supplier down for a week in May.

Protecting Vulnerable Pipeline Infrastructure

This is the Transportation Security Administration’s first mandate designating specific pipeline operators with a critical status in implementing specific cybersecurity standards. 

A previous TSA directive in May required that pipeline operators notify federal authorities of any suspected cyberattacks within a certain timeline. 

“Through this security directive, DHS can better ensure the pipeline sector takes the steps necessary to safeguard their operations from rising cyber threats, and better protect our national and economic security,” said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. 

Going forward, the DHS said it will require operators and owners of TSA-designated critical pipelines to put into place specific measures to protect against cyberattacks, such as ransomware, as well as create recovery plans. 

See also: Can This Cyber ETF Help the Vulnerable Oil and Gas Industry?

The UCYB ETF Invests in Cybersecurity

Ransomware attacks are on the rise, and cybersecurity has become a mounting concern as increasingly more companies look to protect themselves and their assets. 

The ProShares Ultra Nasdaq Cybersecurity ETF (UCYB) is a leveraged ETF that tracks twice the daily returns of the Nasdaq CTA Cybersecurity Index, the same index as tracked by the First Trust Nasdaq Cybersecurity ETF (CIBR)

The ETF in fact holds CIBR, then uses swaps contracts on that ETF to obtain leveraged exposure.

UCYB’s underlying benchmark tracks companies that build, implement, and manage security protocols for public and private networks. To be included, companies must have a minimum market cap of $250 million. Within the index, no singular security can carry more than 6% weight; lower volume securities have even tighter weighting restrictions.

UCYB’s benchmark tracks companies such as CrowdStrike Holdings (CRWD), Accenture Plc (ACN), and Cisco Systems (CSCO).

As a leveraged fund, UCYB carries different, greater risks than non-leveraged funds, and should be actively monitored.

UCYB carries an expense ratio of 0.98%, with a contractual waiver that ends on 9/30/22.

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