Insurer AIG has partnered with cyber security company IASME Consortium and insurance broker Sutcliffe & Co to launch a cyber product for the UK’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) associated with the government’s new cyber essentials scheme.
Many businesses are now required to show evidence of compliance with approved standards or qualifications along with appropriate insurance for many aspects of their business, said AIG. Increasingly this is true for cyber security, as larger organisations ask their suppliers for confirmation of cyber standards before doing business.
The UK government, through its cyber essentials scheme, is encouraging businesses to build cyber security into their companies by focusing on five critical security controls. The IASME Consortium offers a self-assessed route to cyber essentials which will help small businesses demonstrate that they operate to those requirements.
AIG supports this initiative and SMEs that can demonstrate they have reached certain technical control requirements by passing the IASME self assessment will automatically be entitled to the new cyber product which provides a range of benefits including help to:
- Meet the costs of notifying customers of an attack and of offering two years’ credit monitoring to customers whose personal data may have been stolen.
- Cover the costs of repairing IT systems and restoring data following a cyber attack.
- Pay fines and penalties where insurable under law.
- Meet costs of PR to restore reputational damage.
- Meet legal costs incurred as a result of cyber attack
“Often smaller organisations are seen as a back door entry to large organisations by hacktivists, which is why strict contractual obligations are often stipulated,” said AIG’s Raheila Nazir, cyber, TMT manager for the UK.
“If an organisation can demonstrate they have assessed such risks and taken steps to mitigate them they can stay ahead of the sophisticated nature of cyber attacks, which will reassure the organisations they want to do business with.
“There is, therefore, real value in SMEs complying with the cyber essentials requirements and attaining certification as it will improve IT security and offer added protection should they suffer a breach of IT security.”
Duncan Sutcliffe, director at Sutcliffe added: “Cyber threat is not around the corner, it is already here, we are the ones that need to catch up. I think the combination of assurance with insurance will go a long way to improving the safety and resilience of SMEs in this country.”
However, a London summit on the industry’s introduction of the technology cautions that testing and acceptance are still at an early stage and firms should proceed with caution.
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