Cyber protection for SME’s

Data theft and cyber crime is all around us at the moment, I’m sure you either know someone who it has happened to, or maybe you’ve been a victim. It’s happening to businesses of all sizes too, not only the large established businesses, but increasingly to the SME sector too.

You need to think about how you would recover from a ‘data’ attack and establish an emergency plan of action. You also need to look at guarding yourself against potential losses, not only for yourself, but your clients too through insurance.

Cyber insurance is a confusing concept. Firstly the term ‘cyber’ has no established meaning in an insurance context. We are aware that it’s related to phones, tablets, computers, data, security and the internet, but there is no generally accepted definition in the insurance sector.

So if ‘Cyber’ is a term with no specific meaning in insurance yet, the word can’t have a real meaning as to the cover or quality of the policy provided, and the products on offer vary hugely.

Policies cover first party exposure (ie your own losses) and third party exposure (ie your liability for losses to your customers or clients), costs of notifying clients or customers, business interruption, extortion, rectification costs, and more. Access to a 24 hour call centre to deal with a potential issue is also often included.

The real need for SMEs is for a policy that protects you against financial losses whilst also protecting the data of your clients and customers. Third party and first party cover – business interruption, rectification costs, forensic investigation/legal support and extortion – is what you should be looking at.

Add to this a data backup facility which provides off-site storage and remote access to files and you suddenly have a policy that resonates with the needs of most SMEs. That means, should the worst happen, lost data can quickly and efficiently be downloaded and the business can continue to trade.

Premiums will depend on type and size of your business but start at around £600.

Westbury would like to thank our guest Author, Clive Sladen, Managing Director of Churchill Insurance Consultants Ltd for writing this article for us.