These days, cyber attacks cost the world more than natural disasters. The average cost of cyber crime for an organisation increased $1.4 million to $13.0 million, according to Accenture, and malicious hackers are now attacking computers and networks at a rate of one attack every 39 seconds.
While insurance against cyber threats is gaining in popularity, there are still far too few organisations that have this essential protection, says Simon Campbell-Young, CEO of MyCybercare. “Insurance against all kinds of risks like disaster, legal liability, and so on, is extremely common. The cyber insurance market’s extremely small size suggests that organisations and individuals are underrating its importance. As more and more breaches happen, this is likely to change, and insurance coverage for cyber attacks should be standard for every individual and business in the next few years.”
He points out that while big companies tend to have cyber insurance, but regular people are far less likely to have digital protection. “This makes sense, because a digital intrusion can cost hundreds of thousands or even millions to fix and recover from. For individuals, the costs of a breach are lower, but still significant,” Campbell-Young says.
The problem, he says, remains a lack of awareness among corporates and individuals alike. A survey in 2018 by KPMG and Harvey Nash found that only a fifth of IT leaders thought their firm was well prepared for an attack, and the many high-profile breaches over the last year back this up. These companies may well be covered by a specific insurance policy, but may not be covered for glitches that can do just as much damage.
“Last year, a British bank botched a computer upgrade and locked millions of customers out of their accounts. This was as damaging to their reputation – and cost almost as much – as an external attack. I doubt they had insurance in place to mitigate the effects of an event like this.”
Similarly, individuals too often believe it won’t happen to them, and aren’t aware of the benefits offered by cyber insurance, Campbell-Young adds. “As people become better-informed about the digital dangers in their lives, and as insurance companies are able to more clearly explain – and more accurately price – their coverage options, the cyber insurance market will grow and will expand rapidly.”
Campbell-Young says that a wide range of insurers is now offering policies that cover specific cyber insurance needs for individuals and businesses alike. “MyCybercare is available through a number of brokerages and insurers, including Bidvest, Renasa and Oaksure Insurance. In addition, a number of other service providers have included MyCybercare cover, together with our digital monitoring solution MycyberDNA, to help ensure their customers are protected. Mweb, for example, now offers MyCybercare, MycyberDNA and Kaspersky as a bundle for customers, providing complete protection.”