Edward Wong is looking forward to witnessing what he believes will be the third wave of technology development - a boom in the security industry. 'The age of the security industry will come,' said the newly appointed North Asia director of Security Dynamics, a US developer of security hardware and software. Mr Wong was a manager at Hewlett-Packard and 3Com during the rise of Unix and the networking industry, in the late 1980s and early 90s. He said security would be a vital issue that had to be dealt with as soon as possible. The issue had been driven by the rapid growth of the Internet, the extension of distributed computing sparked by the rise of Unix, and the latest step in Internet applications: electronic commerce. Passwords, today's most common way of preventing unauthorised access to information, were insecure, Mr Wong said, since they easily could be stolen or guessed by others. Security Dynamics offers a two-factor authentication system, which allows log-on only if a user has both the correct personal identification number and a one-time pass code generated by his authentication token, a piece of handheld hardware all network users must carry. While sophisticated security technology already was available, Mr Wong thought the biggest challenge was to educate the market, raising customers' awareness of the risks of a networked environment and urging them to look for a more reliable security system. Despite the economic downturn in Asia, Security Dynamics is confident of increasing sales in Asia-Pacific this year. The company is aiming for 400 per cent regional growth this year. The region accounts for less than 5 per cent of total revenue but this is expected to rise to 10 per cent in two to three years. Mr Wong said: 'I hope my region [North Asia], with the huge mainland market which is unaffected by the economic turmoil, will play an important role to achieve these goals.' First of all, he will set up new offices in Shanghai and Beijing, and also relaunch a channel programme by recruiting new resellers and providing all sales partners with more training and marketing support. All of the company's sales in Asia-Pacific are now done through resellers. Immediately before joining Security Dynamics, Mr Wong was the sales director of Computer and Technologies International, a local network and computer system integrator.