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Cyber Crime; Time For The Plain English Approach

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The G20 describes the UK as the most cyber-dependent economy of all G20 nations. But alongside this startling growth of internet technology, ecommerce and mcommerce the levels of cyber-crime and the audacity of new generations’ of cyber criminals are more than keeping pace and the threat to each and every UK business has never been more real or more likely.

A UK Government survey carried out in 2014 estimated that 81% of large corporations and 60% of small businesses suffered a cyber-breach in 2014. Whilst over 60% of incidents reported to insurers are the result of accidents, cyber-crime is now the world’s fastest growing category of organised crime and the majority of high value losses stem from actions designed to cause harm.

Andy Jenkins, Operations Director at Russell Scanlan, has been keeping a close eye on the rise of the risk posed by cyber-crime to clients and the wider UK business community. He believes that the warnings of this threat are still so linked with high level technology that many still do not consider themselves vulnerable.  

As an industry we are bombarded almost daily with facts and statistics about the interminable rise of cyber-crime and the horror stories featuring individual businesses that have suffered as a direct result. As an industry we regularly communicate this latest news to our clients and customers and look to stay ahead of the criminals (and the technology) with products offering the right levels of protection and compensation.

But the messages are still falling short of their mark and although the insurance industry is awash with the facts and statistics readily supplied by a number of government agencies, it is time to take more of a plain English approach and take the discussion directly to the heart of our business communities.

More UK businesses, of all sizes, are becoming victims of cyber-crime every year and these are not just the corporate giants targeted by the super hackers. We are seeing more and more reports of smaller businesses being affected. Take a small independent retailer, trading online and making the most of the growth in ecommerce services. Although successful a cyber-crime loss of say £50k could tip the balance and force closure. And that’s all it takes.

Imagine as a business, losing all your company data overnight, and I mean all – right down to the last email address. Most will have back up and business continuity cover in place but full recovery to functioning business takes time and time is money. Cyber–crime is not just about theft of money or data assets, it can be just about cyber vandalism and the cyber criminals are currently a step ahead and more sophisticated than their victims.

Business cyber-crime is now more prevalent than house fires in the UK. It really is time to look past the jargon, seriously assess the risk and take some advice on the protection your business will need for now and future cyber threats.

Less than 10% of UK companies have cyber insurance protection even though 52% of CEOs believe that their companies have some form of coverage in place.

For more information please contact Andrew Jenkins at Russell Scanlan on 0115 983 8816 or at Andrew.jenkins@russellscanlan.com.

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