The financial industry is about as big as business gets.
A big part of that business is high-speed trading software that runs an algorithm to make lightning fast decisions, taking into account risk, timing, price and other market conditions. Tiny changes in the market can yield big profits for anyone quick enough and savvy enough to look for them.
This practice is known as high-frequency trading, or algorithmic trading.
Naturally, financial trading firms want to keep this technology a secret. Late last year, a programmer was sentenced to 15 years in prison for trying to make off a with a portion of Goldman Sachs' code.
Considering how much KFC guards their secret recipe, it's no wonder that financial trading firms go to great lengths to keep their multi-billion-dollar secret a mystery.