As businesses of all types move almost exclusively online and individuals rarely separate from their web devices, cyber crime is quickly becoming a widespread problem, costing the UK an estimated £27bn last year alone. This includes £3.1bn affecting ordinary citizens through identity theft and online scams and £21bn affecting businesses of all types. Sectors hit hardest include pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, electronics, IT and chemical companies.
Cyber crime has remained a somewhat unexamined phenomenon. Low regulations for online security as well as the intangibility of the threat has made theft seem unlikely to many people. The new figures prove, however, that cyber crime is rampant and some estimate the figures could be even higher as businesses and individuals might not know that they’re victims.
The insurance industry hasn’t been particularly quick to respond to this, but policies which cover a business’s cyber risk are available and some build the coverage right into normal policies. As crime surges and the government’s regulatory powers to fine companies for weaknesses in their security infrastructure increase, having a robust security system in place and an insurance policy that covers this type of risk is essential.