What is Cyber Insurance?

Elliott Insurance Services    December 23, 2016

Cyber insurance - cyber liability

Cyber insurance is becoming the new buzz word in the insurance industry and its showing no signs of slowing down.  Computers are targeted at businesses large and small every day.  If you keep any customers personal information, employees information, e-commerce transactions, or hold any important data on your computers that a hacker could use; you may want to consider reading further.

Cyber insurance is often referred to as “cyber risk insurance” or “cyber liability insurance” and it is designed to help a business recover after a cyber event (data breach, hack, etc.) by offsetting the insured costs associated with recovering from cyber events.

Every insurance company that currently offers cyber insurance has slightly different policy terms.  Some insurance companies offer endorsements to your current policy or they could have cyber coverage built into their existing commercial policies.  The endorsement or built in policies tend to offer cyber coverage that is more of a help-line to point you in the right direction.  These help-line based policies are not actually covering you, but they are providing you with the information to start your recovery process.

Cyber Insurance policies may contain some or all of these four components:

First & Third Party Liability:
Cyber liability coverage protects companies for their liability to others and provides reimbursement for expenses related to your covered cyber event. Examples of third and first party coverage on the majority of standalone cyber insurance policies:

  • Notifying clients that their information has been exposed and the legal expenses to determine notification requirements.
  • Purchasing a credit monitoring service for the affected customers of a data breach.
  • Starting a public relations campaign to manage your company public image after your breach.
  • Business interruption coverage to offset the cost of the lost income due to a covered loss.

Media Liability:
Coverage for claims arising from copyright infringement, plagiarism, defamation, libel and slander in electronic content.  The majority of businesses are now online in some shape or form, and this will open their business up to claims arising from what the company puts online.

Network Security:
A failure in your network security could cause a massive loss to your company.  The network security component of a cyber insurance policy is what most people think of when they think of Cyber Insurance.  Some examples for this component are network attacks that bring down your internal network causing financial loss, data breaches, virus transmission originating from your computers, or even cyber extortion.

Privacy:
Identity thefts and stolen credit card information is not a new topic any longer.  Companies can be vulnerable to privacy related breaches even if they don’t have computers online.  It is not uncommon to have cases that involve an employee losing or misplacing a device with a customer’s information on it.  This could even be your cell phone that receives work emails.  If that cell phone were to be lost or misplaced, you could have a privacy breach waiting to happen.  The thieves are getting smarter and even know how to pull the memory of recently printed pages from that laser printer you threw out last week.

The main idea behind cyber insurance is to have third and first party liability coverage.  This would protect the business for its liability to others and reimburse the insured for expenses incurred due to the breach.  The coverage should extend worldwide and hopefully include coverage for defence costs for covered lawsuits.  There are cyber insurance policies that will cover the costs for repair and restoration of the computer programs, electronic data, and even extensive enough to cover the costs of hiring a breach response firm.

The vast differences in every policy are the main reason we would suggest an experienced broker walk your company through the process of choosing the right coverage for them.  Contact us today to make sure you are properly covered with an adequate policy for your business.

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