Data breaches have led enterprises to invest more in cybersecurity programs. But what about consumers, who often feel the effects of a security breach?
Keith Moore, CEO of CoverHound and CyberPolicy, believes that consumers increasingly will take cybersecurity into their own hands and purchase cyber insurance policies.
Many homeowners’ insurance policies include identity-theft coverage, which can include access to credit monitoring and a case manager who can help victims. Some insurance companies and cyber start-ups are taking consumer cyberprotection a step further, offering home-security audits and checking whether computer systems are hack-proof.
Consumer identity theft coverage can also take the form of a personal cyberinsurance plan. For example, The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company (HSB), part of Munich Re offers the HSB Home Cyber Protection that includes removal of malware and reprogramming of home computers and tablets, Wi-Fi routers or other Internet access points; professional advice on how to respond to a ransomware attack and payment of ransom; forensic IT and legal reviews; and more.
In addition, American International Group (AIG) has recently begun offering the personal cybersecurity insurance plan called "Family CyberEdge." Coverage is for expenses that arise from online bullying, extortion and other digital misdeeds. It also includes public relations and legal services, as well as at-home assessments of a family's electronic devices.
Moore of Coverhound, says this is just the beginning of personal cyber insurance, as breaches such as Equifax, Verizon and Chipotle continue to increase in size and frequency.
"Consumers that are paying attention know that relying solely on a business to protect your information is no longer enough. In the near future, more consumers will be taking a more fine-tuned approach to their own personal privacy," he said.
He shared a story about a B&B business owner in the Napa Valley area of California, whose email was hacked, which included all of her bookings for an entire year. The hacker sent an email to all of the clients with reservations, falsely letting them know that her B&B had bed bugs. She eventually went out of business. "That's a perfect example of an immediate impact on one's personal finances," Moore said.
More than any other insurance product, said Moore, cyber insurance is more "can deliver a lot of expertise. People know about their homes and their vehicles, and they insure them, but they don't necessarily understand how their home network works. They think that they are technically savvy, but when it comes to paying a ransom to get their data back, they will need help."