Leading international insurer Zurich has recently released their third annual global SME survey, revealing cybercrime, reputational damage and impact of competition to be the top concerns for today’s business owner.
The report surveyed 2,600 C-suite executives and managers in SMEs across 13 countries in Europe, the Americas, and Asia Pacific. It determined that concerns about cybercrime have tripled since 2013, from 4 per cent to 11 per cent, while concerns about reputational damage, have almost doubled, from 8 per cent to 14 per cent. Both of these perceived risks featured on the first survey was in 2013, but have clearly continued to dominate the list of business concerns.
With effective risk management strategies and appropriate insurance in place, it is possible to reduce these risks to your business.
Protecting Your Business From Cybercrime
The fear of being victim of a cyber attack is not unfounded. The Threat Intelligence Brief report [Webroot, 2016] found Australia to be a lucrative market for cybercriminals. The report found Australian-based cyber threats, including malicious IP addresses, suspicious URLs and phishing sites, more than doubled in 2015. Cybercriminals target a range of businesses, often preying on SMEs that hold personal or sensitive information such as customer credit card information or employee bank details etc.
As a business owner you must be vigilant. There are certain steps you can take to minimise the risk of being the next victim of a cyber attack, such as defining internal cyber security measures, being extremely careful with sensitive information, and having a data breach response plan in place. A comprehensive insurance policy is also necessary for helping to protect your assets and your business against considerable financial loss. Cyber Insurance can cover the key issues that your business may face in relation to using and protecting data and utilising digital media and communications.
Protecting Your Business Reputation
As a business owner, you know the importance of your company’s reputation. Businesses with strong reputations attract better people, are perceived as providing more value, and have more loyal customers who are willing to buy broader ranges of products and services. Businesses with stronger reputations tend to be more successful, so protecting that reputation is understandably a huge concern for business owners.
There are a huge number of potential incidents that can negatively affect your business’ reputation. Health and safety incidents to product recalls; quality control errors; business and service interruptions; financial losses; ethical violations; allegations over business practice; and facing legal action from a third party are all examples of the risks that can affect businesses.
The slightest unintentional error can quickly escalate into a major incident, which damages your reputation, costs you resources and affects your bottom line. In order to reduce the likelihood of this happening, it is vital to effectively manage your business risk. Your insurance broker can offer risk management advice and help to ensure your company is equipped with the necessary resources to mitigate the effects of a reputational risk crisis. Your broker will speak to you about the specific risks that your business is exposed to, and help you put in place a comprehensive insurance plan that addresses all of these risks. By ensuring you have the right insurance in place, you will be able to get your business back up and running again as quickly as possible.
Contact me to find out more about effectively protecting your business from cyber and reputational risk.
Conditions apply for each policy and the information expected from you for a policy to trigger. Coverage may differ based on specific clauses in individual policies. Please ask your broker to explain the additional benefits and exclusions pertaining to your policy.
The information provided is general advice only and does not take account of your personal circumstances or needs. Please refer to our financial services guide which contains details of our services and how we are remunerated.