Cyber insurance is a form of insurance which protects businesses and entrepreneurs from breaches of IT security such as hacking, cyber fraud, data loss or destruction and breaches of privacy.
The threat from such attacks is growing rapidly, with a study by the government showing almost half of UK business experiencing a cyber attack in the last year (source).
Despite this, the same study shows that only 27% of businesses have a formal cyber security policy in place.
Cyber insurance, or cyber liability insurance is a form of protection, for business owners to ensure that their company is safe from such threats. Whereas insurance used to be primarily focussed on assets and liability, remote working, cloud-based software, and the world of work in the 21st century means that insurance needs are rapidly changing.
Protecting your data, your assets, and your company
The infrastructure, hardware and software we all take for granted is subject to a huge array of threats from various sources. Some of these are well-known, however hackers and those with intent now have dozens of avenues of attack. We’ve listed the most common below.
Cifas reported that 2017 saw the highest ever level of identity fraud reported by its members. It’s a global problem, with the FBI reporting over 300,000 complaints of internet fraud, including financial fraud in 2017.
One of the most common ways that this occurs is through password attacks. Passwords are still the simplest form of online security used, and often overlooked. Attacks can be automated (often by ‘brute force’, computers rapidly testing thousands of passwords per second), or simple human error such as using weak passwords or physically writing down passwords for easy theft.
Your business is no doubt your lifeblood, and cyber criminals know this. While crimes against individuals often involve credit card numbers or bank details, cyber criminals are increasingly withholding critical business information, or even information technology assets to ransom. Typically, data, or accounts will be locked until a fee is paid, with the threat of information being leaked or deleted unless payment is received. These payments are often anonymously accepted through means such as cryptocurrencies, making it almost impossible to trace back to the extorter.
Viruses, Denial-of-service attacks, Malware
One of the most common cyber crimes is the distribution of viruses, malware, and other types of software which can disrupt, damage, or take hold of your hardware or software. Malware can be sneakily installed on computers through a rogue click of a banner ad, or more systematically via USB drives. Once a computer is infected, it can be controlled remotely, or leak information without the user knowing.
Phishing attacks can and do happen to anyone. A simple email from your bank or third party provider. Except it’s not from who you think, it just looks like it is. And before you know it, your personal details are sent off.
This can be compounded with your personal data then being extorted. Phishing is one of the largest growing areas of cyber security, with all of us still reliant on email, and some phishing attacks looking virtually identical to a genuine email we might receive from a provider.
These can come about when accessing free/public wi-fi hotspots. If a connection isn’t secured, sensitiveEC1 data is easily obtainable and can be intercepted by criminals. This can be made worse if malware is then installed on the target computer, collecting sensitive data. This data can then be used to steal further data, or used in a phishing attack, often without any knowledge of the target. Once cyber criminals are in your network they have a myriad of options of how to damage your business.
Is your business covered?
EC to provide input here
If you’re unsure about whether or not your business is safe from the threat of phishing, or if the legal ramifications of data loss has you worried about how you will have to respond, it’s likely that your business could benefit from cyber insurance. The risk, and the price to pay is simply too high to gamble with. Luckily, cyber insurance is an insurance product that provides you with piece of mind that if you have an incident you can call a 24/7 hotline to receive support from expert advisers to help you with the following:
IT Forensic Investigators – help determine the cause and scope of the loss and bring you IT network back to the same position as before the attack.
Data Breach Lawyers – understand if you have breached the GDPR and how to respond to the incident.
Cyber insurance is a product that is straightforward to purchase, and once covered, you you’ll have the peace of mind that there is insurance there to protect your balance sheet as well as the assistance of the above service providers to help you manage the repercussions of such attacks. With the value of cover starting at £100,000, you can be sure that your business and your assets will be safe in the event of a serious cyber threat.
Public Relations Experts – ensure communication around the incident is managed to protect your reputation.
Protect your business today
If your business isn’t protected from threats from cyber attacks, GDPR, and the emerging threats that the internet will bring in the coming years, act now. Get a quote and cover from Cyber Insurer UK in just minutes and protect your business.