The cyber-liability landscape is constantly changing. It is difficult to see and identify risks- consequently it can be a difficult sell to clients. However, it is an essential form of coverage that business owners should not be without. It is essential for agents to educate insurance purchasers about the exposure to loss and potentially devastating consequences of a cyber-breach.
There were 515 million records breached in the U.S. in 2010, according to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse. But part of the issue is regulation and awareness. Over half of U.S. small businesses experienced at least one data breach. Yet only one third of those firms notified individuals that their personal information had been compromised. Forty-seven states require the business to notify victims of a breach. Failing to notify the victims of a data breach exposes the company to significant liability.
Mobile devices have also presented another risk. With free Wi-Fi now available everywhere from the airport to hotels and coffee shops, employee checking work-related data outside of the secure office network opens companies up to even more liability. These are only a few of the risks companies face doing business in the cyber-world.
Convincing clients they need cyber-liability coverage can be difficult. Despite several high profile breaches (among them LinkedIn, Wyndham Hotels, and Nationwide Insurance), many small and midsized businesses resist purchasing insurance coverage. They believe they are invincible, that hackers only target billion dollar corporations. However much like traditional robbery, hackers are opportunists- they will breach your client’s data if they see an opening. And without cyber-liability insurance, your clients are left out in the cold.
All industries and companies face privacy or security network breaches. Storing personal information on clients and employees immediately exposes a company to risk of data breaches, identity theft, and unauthorized use of confidential information. Privacy and Network Security insurance is a necessary coverage agents should provide for their clients.