Key Words: Norwegian sovereign wealth fund chief says he’s more worried about cybersecurity than markets, even after $174 billion loss

“I’m worried about cyber more than I am about markets”

That’s from Nicolai Tangen, the chief executive of Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, who has warned that cyber security has overshadowed any other concerns about the markets in recent years.

Tangen told the Financial Times that Norges Bank Investment Management, the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund with $1.2 trillion in assets, faces an average of three serious cyber-attack attempts every day.

“We’re seeing many more attempts, more attacks [that are] increasingly sophisticated,” he said.

The fund’s deputy chief executive Trond Grande referenced the 2020 hacking of software provider SolarWinds, which allowed Russian state-backed hackers to access companies such as Microsoft and Deloitte and a number of U.S government agencies including the Pentagon.

“They estimate there were 1,000 Russians [involved] in that one attack, working in a coordinated fashion. I mean, Jesus, that’s our whole building on one attack, so you’re up against some formidable forces there,” Grande said.

The Oslo-based fund, which was set up in 1996 to invest Norway’s energy earnings, recorded its worst ever loss in the first half of 2022, shrinking by $174 billion or 14.4%. The loss was driven by recession fears impacting tech stocks, such as Meta, it said last Wednesday.

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