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Cyber Liability Insurance: A Must-Have for SMEs in the Digital Age.

Cyber Liability Insurance: A Must-Have for SMEs in the Digital Age.

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Australia should take cyber liability insurance more seriously, according to Jane Mason, head of product, channels and risk at insurance brokerage and consultancy BizCover.
Cybercrime incidents in Australia are on the rise, occurring every seven minutes on average during FY22, one minute faster than the previous year.

The advent of AI-generated content is making it even more difficult to detect and prevent cyber threats, as cybercriminals use more sophisticated methods to create malware code, bypassing ethical guidelines. The Actuaries Institute estimates that only one in five SMEs is covered for cyber liability insurance, even though they face the same threats as large businesses.

Although large companies can afford to employ entire IT support teams and hire crisis communication and legal teams to deal with the fallout of a cyber attack, SMEs often lack the means to implement comprehensive protection. Without insurance coverage, SMEs risk losing money, data, and reputation, which can be emotionally isolating for business owners. As cyber risks become omnipresent and dynamically unpredictable, it is crucial for small businesses to consider implementing best practice cybersecurity and response plans.

Mason explains that 95% of cyber incidents happen due to human error, such as losing a laptop, leaving it unlocked, or conducting work from public Wi-Fi. She recommends SMEs to follow best practices in cybersecurity, such as updating software and patches, using data encryption, upgrading devices if the manufacturer has discontinued support for the software, enforcing strong user credentials and multi-factor authentication, and educating employees on security practices to avoid data breaches.

Cyber liability insurance can assist in the recovery process through incident response, defence costs, reimbursement for business interruption, cyber extortion damages and expenses, and data and system recovery costs. Choosing cyber liability cover can also force a business to reassess its foundational risk management processes and adopt best practice cybersecurity practices.

Published:Thursday, 16th Mar 2023
Source: Paige Estritori

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Disability Insurance:
A type of insurance protection that pays a portion of a person's income lost due to a total or partial disablement arising from either an accident or a sickness.