Cyber Liability Insurance
for Architects, Engineers, & Design Professionals
As the business owner of an architectural, engineering, or design firm, you most likely rely on a computer network for internal and external communication, in addition to designing your projects. And since you receive payment for compensation, there's a good chance your network stores sensitive client information, like contact data and credit card or bank account numbers. And whenever electronic information is being passed back and forth on such a network, it is at risk for being stolen.
Cyber Liability Insurance (also called Data Breach Insurance or Cyber Risk Insurance) protects your company in the event of data theft or information mismanagement. Read on to learn why Cyber Liability Insurance is a smart policy to add to your business insurance plan.
How Cyber Liability Insurance Protects You
Architects, Engineers, and Design Professionals: How Cyber Liability Insurance Protects You
Many startup and small-business owners don't think they're a target for data theft. It seems like something only big, conspicuous corporations have to worry about. But the truth is, hackers don't care how big or small a company is as long as there is valuable information to be stolen. In addition, some hackers target smaller companies because they assume small firms don't have means to protect their data in the same way that the cyber defense departments of larger corporations do.
One big issue with data-theft cases is that they rarely affect only one customer. Once a hacker gains unauthorized access to your network, or a thief gets his hands on your computer, the whole of the information is not hard to find. The lawsuits in a case like this could be many and the costs high, both for your business's financial health and its reputation.
Could your business weather the financial consequences of a data breach? An uninsured business might have to pay for…
- Legal fees. This is how much it costs to defend yourself in court — something you still have to do, even if the claim is unfounded.
- Judgments or settlements. Depending on the type of stolen information and the number of clients involved, this number could skyrocket to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
- The expense of notifying customers. Generally, executing a mass mailing to formally notify affected customers is a good idea.
- Credit monitoring services. As a gesture of good faith and responsibility, you may want to offer to services to your clients so that they may keep an eye on compromised accounts.
- Public relations. One of the most important campaigns after a data breach is damage control. You probably rely on your good reputation to attract and maintain customers. A bad public image could be devastating to your cash flow for years to come.
As you can see, the expenses that come with a data breach quickly become impossible for most startups and small businesses to afford. A solid Cyber Risk Insurance plan can provide your business with the kind of protection it needs to keep its doors open after a data theft or information mismanagement situation.
If you are unsure of the specific Cyber Liability risks of your architectural, engineering, or design firm, an insureon agent can help you analyze your risk and choose the policy that works best for your business.
What You Need to Know About Cyber Liability Insurance
What Architects, Engineers, and Design Professionals Need to Know About Cyber Liability Insurance
Because Cyber Liability coverage is still a relatively new product in the insurance world, policies between insurance providers can vary greatly, as can deductibles and monthly premiums. Consequently, there is often room for negotiation.
Generally, there are two types of coverage — first-party coverage and third-party defense and liability coverage — but your business likely only requires first-party coverage. As you choose a Cyber Liability policy to add to your business insurance plan, keep these questions in mind…
- What do you resources look like? In addition to helping you pay for the cost of a data breach, insurance providers will often give you suggestions to help mitigate your Cyber Liability risk. Larger corporations have whole departments dedicated to this, but insurers understand that you may not have those resources. When you are better protected, they are also better protected.
- Do you store information in the cloud? Many startups and small business do, whether it's their primary means of storage or their backup. Don't assume that your data is protected by your cloud provider's insurance policy, because often it is not. Be sure to review your contracts to determine whether or not you are still legally responsible for the security of the information you store in the cloud.
- Is Cyber Liability covered under you General Liability policy? The answer is usually "no." It's important for business owners to be reminded that while your General Liability Insurance policy covers a lot, it does not automatically cover Cyber Liability. It may be possible for your insurer to integrate this policy to provide seamless coverage between your existing policies, but you'll have to specifically ask for such coverage.
Customize Your Business Insurance Plan
Architects, Engineers, and Design Professionals: Customize Your Business Insurance Plan
If you're ready to add Cyber Liability Insurance to your business insurance plan, contact insureon to speak with an agent who specializes in the needs of architects, engineers, and design professionals. He or she will assess your business's individual risk and help match you with the right insurer to cover your needs.