For those of us who love to talk cyber security, March 1st 2016 was a fantastic opportunity to hear from experts from across the industry, thanks to The Cyber Security Seminar held at the Harlow Enterprise Hub. Five specialists in a variety of fields took the time to speak exclusively about how their specific services or sector was able to deal with the rapidly growing cyber threat. Local businesses were also invited along to listen and contribute with their own questions and concerns, making for a highly informative and invigorating afternoon.
One speaker who made a big impression on the amassed crowd was Caroline Garrow, an Associate Director of SEIB Insurance Brokers. As a provider of a service that we all require and perhaps take for granted, it was interesting to hear how the cyber liability insurance side of her business had flourished over recent years as the potential risks have risen.
She began with a background of SEIB, highlighting their 50+ years in the industry and nationwide presence. She touched briefly on their place in the market too, as a firm who has access to all UK insurers and London markets, making them ideally placed to deal with businesses across multiple sectors. The background was quite crucial to the overall presentation, with the message seeming to focus on why using an established, knowledgeable insurance broker was the beneficial route to take.
Caroline was also able to bring to light some quite astounding statistics around cyber insurance and the lack of knowledge businesses have as to its value. Only 2% of large firms have explicit cover, with the figure dropping below even that for smaller firms. However, Caroline was keen to point out that this was a figure from January 2015, and that insurance was now, thankfully, reaching the mainstream.
She then went on to give an overview of the types of data loss and internet crime that are regularly experienced, citing extortion, fraud, malicious/non-malicious damage and human error. At this point, Caroline went into more detail, particularly about fraud. For small businesses, the stats were again quite frightening. She explained that the total cost of the worst incident on average ranged between £75,250 and £310,000, a rise from £65,000 – £110,000 in 2014. Equally frightening was that 22% of small businesses “don’t know where to start” with cyber security.
Caroline continued to give background on the insurance itself, telling us that Cyber Liability Cover was developed to address the key risks the market had recognised. Clients purchase Cyber Liability Cover in the form of extensions to traditional policies or as standalone policies. A policy providing £1m of cover for a business with up to £500,000 Revenue would cost as little as £450.00 per annum. The reasons for taking out the cover included property policies not covering data loss, the financial repercussions of having to recover a loss and potential system downtime costs.
Caroline left us all with one very important, and very clear message:
Don’t leave it to Chance!
As well as Caroline, other speakers at the event included Essex Police Crime Commissioner, Nick Alston CBE who was the keynote speaker, Michael Tye from Infinigate, who tackled the Insider Threat, Donell Henry of Barclays Bank, with a talk on cyber fraud and our very own Colin Tankard, Managing Director of Digital Pathways who focused on ‘How They Hack’.