Business owners, if you store customer data on your computers, listen up. This is important.
According to IBM, there are over 91 million “security events” involving corporate computers every year. The chances that your business is at risk is not science fiction. Yes... you could be next.
And don’t think that you aren’t big enough or important enough to get the attention of cyber bad guys; according to a recent study by the antivirus giant Kaspersky Labs, almost half of businesses surveyed in 2015 lost sensitive data due to a breach of digital security.
The cost to recover? Kaspersky’s survey said that Small to Medium sized Businesses (SMBs) spent an average of $38,000 due to these breeches of security.
Your business is not too small to be a target.
There are too many ways that internet thieves can harm you, so I’ll talk about only a few.
Hacking the old fashioned way: bad guys on the internet poke and prod using automated programs to see if there’s a way into your systems. They use “bots,” or automated robot programs, to walk up to every door on the internet to see if someone forgot to lock it. It’s almost impossible to guarantee that every digital lock you have will always keep them out. The bots have infinite patience and never stop trying your locks.
Lost or stolen passwords: we constantly hear about how someone high up in an organization got tricked by a phony email into revealing a password. Even the best and smartest in your organization can slip up. Getting tricked can happen to anyone. It only takes once.
Lost or stolen laptops and phones: this one is old-school for sure. But it still accounts for major security breeches every year.
Cyber extortion: it’s a new twist on old mafia method. “Pay up or else.” Here’s how this typically works: you happen upon the most innocent of websites, and BAM... your computer (and your network) is locked down. There’s a phone number to call, and you pay to get the code to unlock your systems... or else. This is one of the fastest growing threats on the internet today.
Most business insurance policies have some automatic overage for cyber risks. But “most policies” does not mean all polices. And not all polices cover cyber risks the same.
You need coverage for:
- Cyber extortion.
- Lost data- especially customer data.
- System recovery.
- Notification to customers costs.
- Legal expenses.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many ways you can be harmed in a cyber-breech, and cyber liability insurance is designed to help in many of these situations.
You need to understand what your exposure is. Start by sitting down with an experienced insurance agent to discuss possible risks. Then, you and your agent can start looking at what is covered, and just as importantly, what is not covered by your current policy.
In this new era of cyber risk, not everything can be covered. But what can be protected by insurance, ought to be protected. Call an experienced agent today.
Bruce Sackrison is an insurance property and casualty broker affiliated with Professional Insurance Associates helping clients with insurance needs for personal, commercial and business insurance. Bruce can be reached at 707-931-0186, firstname.lastname@example.org