Working from home has become a new reality for companies and individuals within the last two weeks. Most businesses have quickly moved from an outside office set up and adapted into a virtual one. But with employees now logging in from their home network and accessing IT infrastructure remotely, it’s getting easier for companies to be exposed to cyber threats and technology errors.

Recent examples of well-known companies affected by cyber-attacks and data breaches include Equifax, Yahoo and the Saudi Telecommunication company.

If you think a breach won’t happen to you? Think again.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, cybercrime has been on the rise. Attackers have been taking advantage of people’s interest for information on the coronavirus in order to distribute malicious malware and carry out various forms of cyber-attacks. Previous insights from Kaspersky Lab recorded 1,101,745 phishing attacks in the UAE during the first quarter of 2019, and over 150 million malware attacks in the Middle East, Turkey and Africa (META), resulting in an alarming 108% increase from the first quarter of 2018.

Seeing the impact this has caused on businesses, there are a variety of factors that need to be considered:

  1. Risks that primarily arise from the low security level of home network now used by employees.
  2. The increased volume of data sharing via mobile phones and personal devices.
  3. The lack of employee awareness and company protocols on transfer, storage and encryption of sensitive data.

Managing risks in short-term

Using traditional cyber risk mitigation tools start by making your company IT systems security levels ready for remote access, creating awareness of cyber threats among employees, and implementing strict processes on data handling.

Employees, however, have a critical role to play. Each must ensure they are conducting system updates on time, using strong passwords, and logging out after work.  

Due to the significant rise in remote working and high risks associated with cyber threats, it is also essential to leverage on insurance solutions, such as cyber, media, technology errors, and omissions policies.

All you need to know about Cyber Insurance

Having cyber insurance for your company means that you can protect your business and individuals from the financial losses resulting from cyber crimes such as data destruction, extortion, theft and hacking. This risk is excluded from liability insurance policies, and require a specific coverage relevant to your online activity.  

The financial cost associated to a cyber breach include:

  • Economic costs: Theft of intellectual property, corporate information, disruption in trading and the cost of repairing damaged systems.
  • Reputational costs: Loss of consumer trust, loss of current and future customers to competitors and poor media coverage.
  • Regulatory costs: GDPR and other data breach laws means that your organization could suffer from regulatory fines or sanctions as a result of cybercrimes.

Getting a risk assessment and price estimate

Insurance providers offer policies with variable levels of coverages, and standard exclusion such as networks, systems and infrastructure out of your company control. But depending on your activity, such as using online payment platforms and remote access to a physical server or cloud based solution, you will require a different level of coverage.

That’s why it is important to work with insurers and professionals that can provide the best solution and coverage levels relevant for your business activity and your employees current operational environment.

Bayzat is here to support you and your company from these risks with cyber insurance. If you want to learn more or get your cyber insurance policy today, reach out to saif.abuqurah@bayzat.com.