Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) has had a difficult three weeks. Most tech stocks have a rough ride in 2022, but that has been due to external factors as opposed to reasons specific to their business. This includes worries about inflation, interest rates, supply chain woes and war in Europe. Nvidia shareholders have been feeling the effect of these factors, with NVDA stock down 21% so far this year.
However, Nvidia has also been hit by two headline-making incidents in quick succession. This is making some investors nervous about the stock’s future.
The first issue was the collapse of Nvidia’s deal to buy Arm. After being hyped since 2020, the $66 billion deal was called off in the first week of February.
Disappointing, sure, but as I have pointed out, it’s not going to materially impact the ability of this chipmaking giant to outperform. However, just as the Arm news was beginning to fade, Nvidia was in the headlines again. This time for a cyberattack. This one has many people concerned.
With all of this in mind, should it make you wary of NVDA stock?
Breakdown of Nvidia Cyberattack
On Feb. 23, Nvidia detected a breach in its network. It appeared that hackers had stolen around 1TB of data from Nvidia servers, including employee credentials, proprietary code and 250GB of data specific to Nvidia’s RTX 3000 series graphics cards.
At one point there was speculation the hack might be a state-sponsored attack by Russia, but that does not seem to be the case. There was also early speculation it was a ransomware attack, but that also appears to be untrue.
The story has evolved as more details have emerged. In the most recent development, the hackers were trying to sell a software tool that unlocks the hashtag limiter on Nvidia’s RTX 3000 series graphics cards. The limiter slows the cards down when used to mine cryptocurrency. The asking price from the hackers? $1 million.
Nvidia’s Reaction to the Cyberattack
Nvidia has spoken to the press about the hack, claiming the data breach does not affect its customers or its ability to do business. A week after the hack was first noticed, a company spokesperson told CNN: “We are aware that the threat actor took employee credentials and some NVIDIA proprietary information from our systems and has begun leaking it online.”
Law enforcement agencies have been notified and the company says it has tightened its security. Nvidia also says it is working with cybersecurity experts in its response to the attack.
Bottom Line on NVDA Stock
The hack experienced by Nvidia has been in the news for more than a week at this point. It’s obviously a serious event and with new details continuing to arrive, the situation is still developing.
That being said, any damage done to Nvidia is likely to be short term. Even if the crypto-mining hashtag bypass sees widespread distribution, it affects a relatively small portion of Nvidia’s business. And the reality is the crypto miners still need the Nvidia video cards — all the bypass really does is allow them to buy consumer cards instead of the crypto-specific versions.
That’s not great news for gamers who could face more competition to buy Nvidia video cards, but Nvidia still gets a sale either way.
In terms of proprietary info like Nvidia’s DLSS code from the RTX 3000 cards, the company has very few graphics hardware competitors. Use of Nvidia technology would be fairly obvious and the company will be watching closely. As Extreme Tech points out: “it’s unlikely any serious programmer from either company would even glance at the forbidden fruit out of fear of legal retribution.”
The hacking event hasn’t had any real impact on analyst views of NVDA stock. The investment analysts polled by CNN Money still have NVDA rated as a consensus “Buy.” It still earns a stellar “A” in Portfolio Grader as well.
If you’re worried about further developments making the Nvidia hacking seem worse, I don’t blame you for taking a wait and see approach with NVDA stock. However, I don’t see anything at this point that seems likely to impact NVDA’s promise of long-term growth. I continue to see the current weakness in Nvidia stock as a buying opportunity.
On the date of publication, Louis Navellier had a long position in NVDA. Louis Navellier did not have (either directly or indirectly) any other positions in the securities mentioned in this article. InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.