Cyber Crime – are you at risk?

Cyber crime can hit any business, large or small, at any time, yet only 46% of worldwide companies have some form of cyber crime insurance.  Do you use a laptop, computer or mobile device for business?

What is cyber crime?

Cyber crime encompasses almost any criminal activity that can be perpetrated via the internet and computers.

Think your business is too small to be affected?

Think again!   Not only does cyber crime include cyber-stalking, industrial espionage and information theft, fraud, extortion, identity theft, phishing scams and cyber terrorism; it includes theft of laptops, computers and mobile devices that are left unattended.

Cyber crime costs Australian businesses $4.5 billion annually, yet it’s one of the least insured policy areas.

When Julia Gillard was in cabinet, she launched Australia’s first national cyber security strategy and announced the establishment of the Australian Cyber Security Centre.

“Australia”, Julie Gillard said, is “an attractive target for a range of malicious cyber attacks” thanks to threats from politically-motivated hackers, as well as criminal networks in nation states.

It highlights a very serious – and potentially expensive – issue that all Australian businesses are facing right now. Yet many are doing very little about the potential damage that can be caused by cyber crime.

In November last year, computer hackers from a Romanian syndicate allegedly accessed the IT systems of 100 small Australian retail outlets and stole credit card details of over 500,000 customers. Losses from the single incident – the biggest theft of credit card data in Australia so far – added up to around $30 million. The probe to bring down the gang involved law enforcement officers from agencies in 13 countries. The Australian Federal Police now considers cyber crime one of its major areas of investigation.

Did you know?

  • The annual global cost of cyber crime remediation is $1 trillion.
  • In 2012 information theft accounted for 44% of total external costs, up 4% from 2011.
  • Disruption to business or lost productivity accounted for 30% of external costs, up 1% from 2011.
  • There are 556 million cyber crime victims per year, 1.5 million per day and 18 victims per second.
  • The total annual cost of cyber crime in Australia is $2 billion.
  • The average cost per victim of cyber crime is $197 (Norton).
  • Less than 50% of companies have a documented process for handling data breaches.
  • Only 46% of worldwide companies have some form of cyber crime insurance.

Tips for preventing cyber attacks

Passwords, email, social networking and out-of date software all provide opportunities for cybercriminals. To prevent attacks:

  • Protect your computer with both a firewall and an anti-virus program. Keep your anti-virus program up-to-date and remember to renew your annual subscription.
  • Back-up all important data. Viruses and malware can destroy vital information.
  • Create a password of more than six characters with a combination of letters and numbers. Do not save the password on your computer or share it with others and change it regularly.
  • Email is the most likely route for viruses and hackers. Do not open any email attachments from people you do not know.
  • Use the privacy settings on social networking sites to prevent malicious access to your personal information.

Insurance – Providing Financial Protection to Cyber Crime

Did you know that we can arrange a policy to cover your Cyber exposure? Policies available offer cover in main areas such as:

  1. Your liability to others who may have had their information stolen from your systems.
  2. Expenses you may incur in repairing or recovering your own systems.
  3. Your business’s direct financial loss, consequential loss and legal liability resulting from cyber crime breaches.
  4. Costs to cover your crisis management and reward expenses including the costs of public relations consultants.
  5. E-business interruption, including first dollar and extra expenses.
  6. Privacy notification expenses, including the cost of monitoring and restoration of services for affected customers.
  7. E-threat including the cost of a professional negotiator.
  8. E-vandalism expenses, even when the vandalism is caused by an employee.

If you think you require more advice on this often over looked business risk, please call us today on 1300 799 422.


Source: NIBA/IRP magazine