Organizations looking to insure themselves against cyberattacks in which their data is taken and held for ransom by malicious actors will soon find it more costly and challenging to acquire, according to a cybersecurity expert. Organizations and businesses, large and small, in Kingston and Brockville are facing an escalation of attacks that use advanced tools to lock down confidential and sensitive data that will only be released after a ransom has been paid to get an encryption key.
As a response to the rising increase in cyber threats and cyberattacks, cyber insurers are lowering coverage for sectors that are viewed as high risk. This means that if there will be limits placed on the amount of coverage that can be provided by cyber insurers, there will also be limits placed on how much money will be paid to businesses and organizations that are victims of ransom attacks.
Not only are cyber insurers less willing to accept additional insurance applications, but they are putting more effort into their due diligence and making careful decisions about who they are willing to provide coverage for. Cyber insurers are not making decisions based on what they are being told by the applications. More cyber insurers are performing audits on applicants to make sure they are actually as stable and secure as they are claiming to be in their applications.
Unfortunately, cyberattacks are becoming an unfortunate reality for large and small businesses in Kingston and Brockville, and Canada as a whole. During the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a greater focus on remote working, which intensified the issue of cyber threats and cyberattacks, likely because more businesses and organizations transitioned to an online workforce without implementing security best practices.
No industry or sector is safe when it comes to cyber threats and cyberattacks, and the impact of an online attack can range from disruption to devastation. More organizations saw an increase in the number of cyberattacks during the COVID-19 pandemic, and in 2020, a quarter of Canadian organizations experienced a breach. Nearly 80% of Canadian cybersecurity professionals believed the spike in cyberattacks was due to more employees working from home.
On a global scale, one of the most widespread types of cyberattacks is a ransomware attack. Retail, finance, and insurance sectors were the top Canadian industries targeted, followed by the government and transportation sectors. Alarmingly, nearly 40% of Canadian organizations were not certain if they had been the victim of a cyberattack or not in the last year.
Apart from the significant financial risks associated with a cyberattack, especially a ransomware attack, a cyberattack can result in several contractual claims and regulatory fines. One cyberattack can expose information such as, but not limited to, the following:
More detailed, stricter cyber liability insurance questionnaires are serving as a wake-up call for organizations. More organizations are beginning to understand how quickly their operations can be taken over, and they are beginning to understand the seriousness of the attacks and why cyber insurers are beginning to take extra precautions. Organizations have to review their external and internal security practices. Having cyber insurance is one way to reduce the potential costs of a cyberattack, but organizations cannot obtain cyber insurance without making improvements and getting serious about IT management.
The main reason organizations obtain cyber insurance is to cover the expenses that are needed to successfully recover from an attack. Organizations have to worry about more than having the ransom payment covered. If there is a data breach within your organization, you will incur expenses related to an investigation, hiring a legal team and PR team, notifying those whose information was potentially exposed, credit monitoring services, and more.
If you are storing sensitive information, you should take the appropriate steps to protect your organization’s data and systems. Some best practices for your organization to consider are as follows:
It is important to remember that not every cyberattack will be done by malicious actors using advanced and sophisticated measures. Your organization’s defence will only be as strong as its weakest link. Your organization needs guidance from experts when it comes to designing and implementing an IT solution that fits your organization’s unique needs.
You need to assess your organization’s level of risk and the level of coverage it needs. Your organization needs a solution that is tailored to fulfill your needs and will mitigate your liability if you fall victim to a cyberattack. One of the most impactful ways to reduce the risk of cyberattacks within your organization is to partner with an IT solutions company that can provide your organization with access to the following and more:
While cyber insurance is not new, there has been an increase in the market. It can be difficult to keep up with the changes and what coverage you can qualify for with a cyber insurance policy. Some security controls are even required to obtain or renew your cyber insurance policy. It is important to know your cyber risks so you can implement the best security controls and practices to obtain cyber insurance and secure your organization.
Do you know your cyber risks? Contact OnServe to schedule your consultation to ensure that you have all your ducks in a row and to make sure you can get the insurance your organization requires.