The Internet has done many wonderful things for launching businesses, creating new marketing and distribution channels and facilitating client relationships, amongst other things. However, a company’s online presence can be attacked just like its other assets. My name is Jeremy Powers and this post is about how you can protect your company from cyber attacks.
Businesses usually have insurance for their tangible assets, but few business owners know that they can also get insurance for their digital assets, such as the company’s website, customer database and other information stored electronically in the company’s archives. You can protect your digital assets with something called cyber liability.
I strongly suggest that you take advantage of cyber liability, even if you think you’re too small of a business – any website can be hacked and any data can be stolen, and loss of data could be detrimental to your company’s goodwill and other assets. You can be a victim if you have even the smallest amount of data stored on a server. For example, if you’re an e-commerce retailer, chances are that your customers pay online with PayPal or even by a direct bank transfer. If the data with their card numbers and other banking information is stolen, not only would your company’s reputation would suffer greatly as a result of the theft’s direct impact, but you would also likely experience secondary losses due to damaged goodwill. Therefore, cyber liability is something very important that you should at the very least consider.
But what is cyber liability and how exactly would it help you?
This is a very valid question, and I’ll do my best to explain. Cyber liability, also known as data insurance, can minimise the damage done to your company while you recover from a cyber attack. It serves to protect your company (and sometimes even you in the event of pierced veil of incorporation) from any claims that arise from various digital misconducts. It’s not always included in average general liability policies, which is why not all companies know about it. Below you can find some examples of events cyber liability can help you with.
If you run an online business, you’ve probably been at least somewhat involved with the blogosphere at one point. Free speech is a wonderful thing, but it can sometimes be a double-edged sword – for example, you might have said something slanderous in one of your blog posts about a company or an individual, and they might sue. It’s quite difficult to prove slander and libel in English law, but lawsuits can be quite damaging even if you win them in the end. Cyber liability can protect you from compensation claims that resulted from something defamatory you might have unintentionally written.
Viruses and Trojans can be very annoying at best and destructive at worst. If your company’s computer has been infected and you accidentally passed the virus onto a client or a supplier, causing further damage to their systems, data insurance can help you with any claims arising from that. Same applies to any security breaches inadvertently caused by an employer of your company or any other way.
Financial data loss is one of the worst things that can happen to a company within the digital space, as well as offline. If your server has been hacked and you suspect that financial data has been stolen, or your server crashed and your data has been lost, cyber liability can protect you from compensation claims resulting from the data loss. This is perhaps the most important reason why you should give cyber liability some serious consideration. Digital sphere is not 100% foolproof and things such as server crashes, unsanctioned data leaks and accidental leaks of confidential information about a company’s finances or a client’s banking details can happen, even if you feel that you’ve taken sufficient measures against such things. Cyber liability can protect you in any such event. While it wouldn’t reverse what had happened, it can serve you so that you don’t have to worry about compensation claims and concentrate on rebuilding your goodwill likely damaged by the leak.
The aim of data insurance is to help you manage and mitigate the costs associated with data loss or any other digital mishaps. These things are very stressful and can make or break a company, so make sure your digital assets are taken care of at least insurance-wise.