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Intel posts strong Q4, rides data center group and says it'll restore confidence in its security efforts

Intel's security troubles of late had no impact on its fourth quarter, which was propelled by its data center unit and growth in the Internet of things.

Intel reported strong fourth quarter results as its data center group showed revenue growth of 20 percent with the Internet of things unit up 21 percent.

The company, which is being hit by the fallout from the Spectre and Meltdown security flaws, noted that security was a top priority. CEO Brian Krzanich said in a presentation that one of his key messages was that Intel will "restore confidence in data security with customer-first urgency, transparent and timely communication.

Intel has been under fire of late due to the reaction to its security issues.

Overall, the chip giant reported fourth quarter non-GAAP earnings of $1.08 a share on revenue of $17.1 billion, up 4 percent from a year ago. Intel lost 15 cents a share in the fourth quarter due to a $5.4 billion charge stemming from taxes on offshore earnings.

Wall Street was expecting fourth quarter earnings of 86 cents a share on revenue of $16.34 billion.

For 2017, Intel reported net income of $9.6 billion, or $1.99 a share, on revenue of $62.8 billion. The company also said it was raising its dividend 10 percent to $1.20 a share annually.

Krzanich said the company is benefiting from its investments in memory, programmable solutions, communications and autonomous driving.

Intel also got a lift from its "data centric" units. Intel noted that it saw "strong performance from data-centric businesses, which accounted for 47 percent of Intel's fourth-quarter revenue, an all-time high."

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As for the outlook, Intel projected first quarter revenue of $15 billion with earnings per share of 65 cents a share (70 cents a share non-GAAP) plus or minus 5 cents a share. For 2018, Intel projected revenue of $65 billion with earnings per share of $3.30 ($3.55 non-GAAP).

Wall Street was looking for Intel to report first quarter non-GAAP earnings of 72 cents a share on revenue of $15.03 billion.

26% of organizations haven't yet received Windows Meltdown and Spectre patches (Tech Republic)