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Cyber Insurance Options on the Rise


Would you be surprised to hear that since the start of the pandemic a substantial spike in cyber crime has occurred?  As employees in most offices across the world were suddenly working from home, setting up their temporary workstations, cyber criminals were salivating at the opportunity like some of us used to at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

This cyber crime problem used to seem far away from our rural setting, affecting only large corporations who have substantial data and assets that are leveraged by cyber criminals to shut them down and hold them ransom for a settlement. However, this problem has slowly, but surely, become a risk for most businesses, regardless of the size, number of employees or complexity of security.

The insurance industry first entered the realm of cyber insurance coverage to protect a business from the costs and risk associated with a data breach involving loss of confidential data. Then cyber insurance coverage morphed to include some cyber crime coverage, as well as coverage for things like data-ransom, phishing, and funds transfer theft, to name a few.

The threat of cyber risk continues to evolve, with stats showing that the average ransomware demand increased from $21,358 to $129,274 from 2019 to the pandemic in 2020. The FBI has reported over a 300% increase in cyber attacks reported to their office since the start of the pandemic.  While these are scary numbers, there is good news. As these numbers increased, so did the number of insurers willing to offer coverage, as they see this as a long-term need for Canadian businesses.

One of the challenges in placing insurance coverage to protect your businesses from cyber crime and liability has been the application process. Answering five pages of questions related to operating systems, security, hardware infrastructure, and data storage processes takes time, and often involves the assistance of professionals hired to put these systems together. Again, there is good news as insurers continue to evolve their process to help you get coverage in place.

As insurers continue to evolve and gain a greater understanding of the risk, they are able to fine-tune the application process, the coverage, and the rating to fit Canadian businesses.  It’s fair to say the cyber risk has never been greater for Canadian businesses, and the good news is that it has never been easier to transfer this risk to an insurer.

It’s time our clients get to salivate at the cyber insurance options insurance brokers can present, and make you feel like it is your turn to visit the all-you-can-eat buffet.

Be sure to seek advice and purchase insurance from those who understand your business!

David Schmidt is an Account Executive and Rempel Insurance Brokers in Morris, MB, specializing in insuring farms and businesses across Manitoba and Saskatchewan. 

David is a member of the Canadian Association of Farm Advisors, Winnipeg Chapter. 

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