BCIC preps cyber insurance for businesses

BCIC preps cyber insurance for businesses

BY KELLARAY MILES
Business reporter
milesk@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, October 18, 2020

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Amid rising cybercrimes and sophisticated digital attacks on companies globally, a British Caribbean Insurance Company (BCIC) executive has said that the underwriting company is in the process of adding cyber insurance as a new line to its already extensive list of products.

Lori-Ann Glasgow, general manager of marketing at BCIC ,while speaking in a Computer Society of Jamaica staged webinar last Thursday, October 15, said that the policy, which was still being fine-tuned, was currently being given a few more finishing touches before its official release to the public. Glasgow, in making a case for the soon-to-be-offered product, also underscored the growing nature of cyber threats and urged companies to seriously consider cyber insurance as a part of its business continuity plan.

“Cybercrime is a growing problem and any business plan should have dealing with the fall out of a cyberattack as a cornerstone [especially now when] we've seen much higher profile cybercrimes coming to the front and dominating the news,” she said.

Citing an increase in cases of malware and phishing attacks especially during the COVID-19 pandemic when most services and business transactions are moved online, Glasgow said that the need for cyber insurance become even more needed. “If your company holds, collects, processes or stores a large volume of personal data, whether it's for your customers or your employees— it really just puts you at risk for a cyberattack and cyber insurance can help to cover those cost.”

She said that with the impending Data Protection Act, which was designed to protect people against certain breaches, this type of insurance would also help to offset cost in cases were privacy rights becomes affected.

“Cyber insurance is really protection for you and your business when cybersecurity fails because networks and security may be robust but it's not impenetrable — as such cyber insurance becomes an important safeguard to have.

“Most cyber insurance policies can connect you with the right team of specialist to respond to a breach, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses who really wouldn't have immediate access to these kind of firms,” she added.

WHAT'S COVERED UNDERTHESE POLICIES

Glasgow, in outlining some of what is covered under these policies, cited privacy liability as a third party cost which could result in potential losses for companies. This, as in cases where there is a breach or unauthorised disclosure of customer or employee personal data, could result in significant legal defence cost and class action litigations.

“There is also network security which covers the business in the event that there is a failure which could include a data breach, malware, cyber and extortion demand along with ransomware and business e-mail compromise. It also covers network business interruptions where if there is a breach or an incident and the network goes down because of a cyber incident, the business can recover its lost profits and expenses [lost in those down times],” she continued.

Other breaches attracting significant cost and requiring insurance includes data restoration cover (malware decontamination, system recovery, expert cost) and cyber extortion cover.

“If you think about all of the cost that you may have to incur because of a data breach, think about if your business would be able to dip into its reserves and pay for those or if the business would fold under the pressure?” she inquired.

She said that with BCIC being one of those highly capitalised companies that has navigated a history of covering huge losses, their aim through this product is to strenghten business resilience.

“We will help you to tailor the right cyber insurance policy for your business. We have partnered with a lot of big reinsurers that have a global presence and have been doing cyber insurance for a long time, so they know the cyber landscape, we've also partnered with a number of cybersecurity firm and we've gotten rich idea from them of what is happening in the cyber landscape,” she said.


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