Just like people, your data can be the victim of a kidnapping. These things are real, and they are happening to small and large businesses all across the country.
An increasingly common form of cyber-crime is to infiltrate your company’s data and hold it for ransom. As all of us become more dependent on the Internet for day to day operations, so too do the cyber-criminals looking to take advantage.
Being the victim of data breaches and other security attacks can damage your reputation, but more importantly, your bottom line. One such threat, ransomware, can be particularly harmful and leave your company at high risk if not addressed. Addressing these risks is not expensive.
What is Ransomware?
Ransomware is a form of malicious software which can infect your computer. These attacks often take the form of a message demanding money be paid in return for access to your own systems or sensitive customer information. When faced with a ransomware attack, you may be uncertain whether or not to make the payment. There are solid arguments both for and against doing so.
Why would you consider paying the ransom?
● Payment is sometimes the least costly option available
● Payment may be in best interest for stakeholders
● Payment will avoid fines for loss of important data
● Payment avoids loss of confidential information
● Payment can avoid a publicized security breach
Why would you consider not paying the ransom?
● Payment does not guarantee access back to your system
● Payment funds the attacker and encourages them to strike again
● Payment may cause damage to a corporate brand
● Payment is often an unregulated exchange and can put the organization at risk
Whether you choose to make a payment or not, ransomware attacks can cause both tangible and intangible damage to your organization and others who depend on you.
● Damages from a compromised system can negatively affect those you have a fiduciary responsibility to protect.
● A release of sensitive customer information harms your current customers and your reputation.
● An attack on your suppliers may initiate a counterattack leaving your company with negative supplier relationships.
● Ransomware attacks often leave executives and Boards of Directors embarrassed and with the cost of fixing the damage done to the brand.
● If the attack is large and made public, it can be detrimental to the public trust you’ve worked hard to build.
How to protect your company against Ransomware attacks and their negative consequences
As with most things in life, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. For this reason, your business should – and perhaps does – practice good information security hygiene. But, what do you do if, despite your best efforts, an attack occurs?
Cyber Liability Insurance can help minimize the negative impacts of a security breach or malicious attack on your company. Specifically, this coverage can:
1. Manage the cost of some if not all, of the ransom demands
2. Help pay for legal fees to prosecute the attacker
3. Assist with the costs of repairing your damaged reputation
In their Ninth Annual Cost of Cybercrime Study, Accenture predicts the global cost of cybercrime to reach or exceed $5.2 trillion over the next five years. In comparison, the cost to insure your risk is insignificant! It’s no longer enough to consider purchasing this specialized coverage; the time has come to act.
While the potential for loss due to cybercrimes is huge, traditional business package policies exclude cyber attacks, just like they exclude COVID-19 and other specific claims. Without a Cyber Liability policy, your business is left exposed in the case of an attack that harms you financially and in other less tangible ways.
At UWIB we help companies, large and small protect their interests with cyber security insurance policies, D&O insurance, employment practices liability insurance, fiduciary liability responsibility insurance as well as all forms of Employee Benefits coverage. Contact us now to talk more about how we can put solutions in place for you.