When it comes to cybersecurity, small business owners are often unprepared and overconfident. However, medium market business owners understand the need for cyber-threat protection. Insurance agents are critical in assisting clients in comprehending cyber dangers, especially new and emerging cyber-threat issues.
The pandemic has been encouraging more consumers and company owners to engage in virtual or digital exchanges. Therefore, cyber thieves have a lot of fertile ground for exploiting vulnerabilities. Many American consumers and companies are not ready to guard against common and evolving cyber threats.
Middle-market business owners indeed seem to have a good understanding of cyber threats and prevention practices. However, small business owners and consumer responses are suggesting a different narrative.
While nearly half of cyber assaults target small firms, only a third of small business owners believe they’re at risk. Consumers, likewise, do not fully understand their cyber-risk. In addition, they are mostly ignorant of the resources necessary to recover from a cyber-attack.
A Proactive Approach
As businesses change, there is a potential for agents to strengthen engagement with clients concerning cyber-threat protection. They can proactively inform customers about cyber dangers and share tools to help them prepare. This enhances relationships and consumer confidence, while also driving sales.
There are four themes that insurance agents can use to help clients meet their increasing cyber needs:
1. Assist Small Business Clients In Recognizing Cyber Threats
Small business owners are not ready for cyber dangers. Nearly half say they haven’t any safeguards on their networks, while over half say they don’t provide any cybersecurity training. Additionally, only 1 in 5 small business owners have cyber liability insurance to recover in the event of an attack.
Furthermore, only half of these business owners use best practices when it comes to securing their technology. And while nearly half say their company is prepared for a cyber assault, agents don’t believe their clients are ready.
Surprisingly, one-third of business owners are not confident in their ability to recover in the event of a cyber assault.
Take initiative and bring up cybersecurity in your next meeting with a small business customer. Approximately 8 out of 10 agents claim their clients are unaware of how they are vulnerable to cybersecurity threats. In addition, most of them lack understanding and believe the risk of hacking is low.
Are your clients among the 83 percent who don’t have cyber insurance? Start a conversation with them about cyber hazards. Inform them about what a cyber insurance policy covers and present them with some possibilities.
2. Strengthen Middle-Market Consumers’ Defenses Against Cyber Attacks
In comparison to small businesses, middle-market businesses typically have more sophistication in their operations. They also have a higher awareness of cyber threats and are better able to deal with them. Their trust is justified since they are more likely to take security precautions.
Additionally, 7 out of 10 middle-market business owners report they have cybersecurity insurance and are thinking about a cyber assault. Most of them believe they are ready to deal with one. Furthermore, 80 percent believe they will be able to recover from an attack.
This group also has a high level of trust in its agents. In fact, 7 out of 10 say they trust their agent to provide insurance advice on cyber hazards.
Therefore, it is wise to lean on your carrier partners for cybersecurity loss control resources to share. Address developing operations and coverage gaps to keep middle-market enterprises confident and up to date on new or changing risks.
3. Inform Personal Lines Customers of the Consequences of Cyber Attacks
Consumers sometimes lack understanding of cyber threats. This will likely lead to insufficient preparation for prospective cyber assaults. According to a recent study, many people also don’t take cyber threats seriously.
Only 1 in 3 people feel ready for an attack and only 1 in 10 has cyber coverage. About 40 percent of consumers are unaware of frequent dangers and only 62 percent said they knew about identity theft. Additionally, 56 percent said they knew about malware, while 57 percent said they knew about phishing.
Only half of those surveyed feel they could recover from an attack at all. In addition, 4 out of 10 had no idea how much it would cost. Furthermore, 30 percent of those who have been under attack before say it impacted their personal finances.
Therefore, it’s important to assist your personal lines clients in recognizing common cyber-attack strategies. Help them understand the ramifications of an assault, including the cost in terms of time and money. Compare and contrast this with the price of personal cybersecurity.
4. Provide Clients With Ongoing Cybersecurity Advice as Needs and Threats Change
Offering effective cyber-risk advice to clients may help insurance agents strengthen connections and provide customers with peace of mind.
Nearly half of agents say they’re aware of growing cyber dangers. These include cyber threats such as Internet of Things security breaches, denial-of-service attacks, mobile point-of-sale malware, and deep fakes. However, only about half of agents believe they talk to their consumers about cyber hazards frequently.
Some may require additional cybersecurity training to successfully discuss security alternatives with their clients.
83 percent of insurance agency principals indeed claim to provide ample resources to their staff. However, only 61 percent of producers and 42 percent of customer service representatives concur. This implies that knowledge transmission to all agency employees might be improved.
You may want to reconsider how your organization distributes cyber-risk information with colleagues and clients. The research data indicates that there is a good chance to strengthen relationships and promote new sales.
Image Credit: Harry H Brewster; Pexels; Thank you!