Coleman Insurance Brokers host Cyber Risk Seminar

Coleman Insurance Brokers hosted a Cyber Risk Seminar and presented to a packed room of attendees at the RNLI Head Quarters in Poole. 25 local businesses attended the event which aimed to increase awareness of the different types of cyber risks that businesses face and how cyber insurance can protect and support businesses in the event of a cyber breach.

Examples were shared of real life cyber incidents that have occurred in recent months.  The popular seminar also sought to dispel common misplaced cyber myths and covered the upcoming changes to data legislation with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Presenting were Spencer Coughlin, Commercial Manager at Coleman Insurance Brokers and Richard Kelly, Senior Technology Underwriter at Hiscox.

Spencer grabbed attention with some shocking statistics; in 2016 3 million British businesses were compromised by cyberattacks, UK business were, on average, subjected to almost 230,000 cyber-attacks each and, for the first time, the volume of attacks hitting individual company firewalls passed the 1,000 per day mark, on average.

Detailing breaches at high profile companies such as Debenhams, Wonga, Equifax and CEX-LP, with customer records compromised standing at 26,000, 250,000, 700,000 and 2,000,000 respectively, Spencer warned the audience, “Don’t bury your head in the sand when you hear of another high profile cyber-attack, thinking ‘it won’t happen to us’.  SME businesses are as vulnerable, if not more vulnerable, than the larger organisations.”

Dispelling common cyber myths, Spencer talked about use of the cloud for data storage and pointed out that storing data in the cloud does not absolve a business from their responsibilities.

Richard started with an interactive cyber quiz to challenge the audience’s understanding of the risks that cyber breaches posed.  He discussed the upcoming GDPR changes which will impact on all business in 2018 and hi-lighted how proving liability for data leaks and breaches will change – the burden of proof will shift and individuals claiming damages will no longer need to prove their losses, only the emotional impact.  He urged businesses to be aware of the costs that they might incur should a cyber breach take place and the potential reputational damage that a business is exposed to.

Hi-lighting the different types of risks businesses face, Richard stated that Ransomware is the most common claim being made currently. Spencer agreed commenting, “Ransomware is at epidemic levels and cyber criminals are focusing on businesses of any shape or size.

“Ransomware attacks made the press recently after it affected 42 NHS trusts, Renault and FedEx. Hackers are getting much more sophisticated, carrying out research on their victims. They are utilising social media such as Facebook and Linked-in profiles to assist them in creating believable correspondence, enticing victims to open up a file which contains a virus.”

Spencer concluded, “We are delighted at the turnout at today’s event.  Cyber risk is clearly very much on businesses agendas. With cyber-crime on the increase, it’s only a matter of ‘when’ and not ‘if’ a business will suffer a cyber breach.  We hope that today has dispelled some myths, helped businesses to understand some of the key risks and how insurance can help businesses both technically and financially.”

Richard finished, “Cyber risks are ever increasing and, with new legislation around the corner, investment in prevention, detection and training has never been more important to protect organisations from costly business interruptions and possible brand impairment.  It’s been great to attend today and answer so many questions from the floor from a very engaged audience.”

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