Cyber Insurance 01 July 2016

Your business is under attack. It’s the last thing you want to hear. All that work, all that time, money and effort to build your business up to become a success, all being undone by cyber criminals who managed to sneak in through a chink in your armour.

Sadly though, it’s something that far too many big business owners have woken up to recently as government research into cyber security* found out. They discovered that, during the last year, two thirds of large UK businesses fell victim to a cyber breach or attack. Of those incidences, nearly seven out of ten attacks on UK firms involved viruses, spyware or malware.

Cyber-crime is an expensive business

The financial impact of cyber attacks is a tough one to bear. The government survey research discovered that in some cases the cost of cyber breaches and attacks to businesses spiralled upwards into millions of pounds. What’s all the more sickening for the victims is that many of these problems could have been prevented. More often than not it’s all down to the application of good, basic cyber hygiene across your business.

That’s why the Government have introduced their Cyber Essentials scheme, in an effort to ensure that UK businesses are better protected and prepared to face up to such attacks in future. It’s part of their National Cyber Security Programme which will also see a new National Cyber Security Centre launched later this year in London as the threat from cyber attack both on a business and national security level looms ever larger.

The Cyber Essentials Scheme aims to provide businesses both small and large with actionable guidance as to how they can best protect themselves against cyber threats. As part of the scheme, businesses can apply for a Cyber Essentials badge to advertise the fact that they adhere to government-endorsed standards of cyber security which, in light of constant media coverage of incidences of lost or compromised personal data, is no bad thing in terms of client reassurance and company reputation.

Take action to protect yourselves

But despite the fact that the government are investing £1.9bn over the next five years to tackle cyber-crime, it’s down to businesses themselves to take action to avert breaches and attacks. The Government’s Cyber Governance Health Check**, launched following the TalkTalk cyber attack in October 2015, found that only a third of the UK’s top 350 businesses understood the threat of a cyber attack, and only a fifth of businesses have a clear view of the dangers of sharing information with third parties. Furthermore, their Cyber Security Breaches Survey found that only half of all firms have taken any recommended actions to identify and address vulnerabilities while only a third of all firms have a formal written cyber security policy in place – despite one in four large firms experiencing a breach once a month.

The Cyber Essentials scheme is a great start towards good governance of your levels of cyber security at your business. At the end of the day, your company is only ever as strong as it is protected – so take a look at the government recommendations and see how your business matches up. Better protection and better practices can help to keep your business safe from cyber attack.

At Anthony James Insurance, we have a number of insurance policies that will help to ensure that your business is protected when it comes to cyber attack and the potential fall-out afterwards should your business fall victim. If you’d like to know more about how we can help your business to stay safe from cybercrime (and what to do should the worst happen), then give us a call on 01509 274000. We’re here to help and advise you every step of the way, and we think you’ll find our approach to cyber insurance different. Reliably different.

*Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2016, Department for Culture, Media & Sport 11 Nov 2015

**Cyber Governance Health Check 2015/16, Department for Culture, Media & Sport 8 May 2016