In recent years, you may have noticed more businesses taking out cybersecurity insurance policies to protect against unforeseen cyberattacks. With cybercrime perpetually increasing, this makes sense.
If you’ve already purchased cybersecurity insurance, or you’ve been thinking about it, it’s a good move. However, it’s not enough.
Cybersecurity Coverage Starts With Your IT Security Measures
Insurance can help you clean up the mess after a security incident; a plan can help you prevent attacks in the first place. In fact, you probably won’t be able to get cybersecurity insurance unless you already have certain security measures in place.
It’s not easy to get insured. Companies that offer cyber insurance have strict requirements for approving policies, and ransomware attacks are specifically becoming harder to insure against. For instance, most ransomware attacks are caused by misconfigurations, which takes responsibility for those instances fall on the user. Because of this, some insurers are reducing coverage for ransomware incidents. Even if you manage to get coverage, if you don’t meet the requirements, your coverage can be revoked.
What Do Insurance Companies Require?
Most, if not all cyber insurance companies require policyholders to have the following minimum security measures in place before they’ll be approved:
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). Since many security incidents are caused by social engineering (phishing attacks) and careless mistakes, like sharing passwords over email that later get hacked, MFA is crucial. Putting this into place ensures that only authorized users can access your company network. Each user will need to retrieve a code from a phone or email account in order to log into the network. MFA is now a requirement with most policies.
- Security Awareness Training & Testing. Your IT security policies only work when your team actively follows the rules. Building a company culture where security is taken seriously requires training. You also need to test your security measures to make sure they’re working properly.
- Separate Backups. Having multiple backups, including at least one offline backup, is essential. If you don’t back up your data, you’ll have a hard time getting cyber insurance.
- Endpoint Detection & Response/Managed Detection & Response. Using automated endpoint detection and response software catches a lot of threats before they have a chance to cause damage. You need to set up some kind of security automation in order to get coverage.
- Vulnerability Management. Your organization should be continually assessing, reporting, and managing vulnerabilities. This is an essential part of your role in cybersecurity.
Implementing all of these helps reduce the potential for attacks and mitigates the damage should an attack occur. You need to do everything you can to protect your business before an insurance company will provide you with coverage.
You Need Strong IT Security Policies, Procedures, And Training
To protect against cyber threats, you need more than an insurance policy that covers your expenses post-attack. You need a security plan that includes measures for backing up your data on a regular basis and making sure everyone in your company follows your policies. You also need systems specifically designed to secure your company’s network and digital assets.
As stated earlier, an insurance policy can only cover you financially post-attack; it can’t revive stolen, deleted, or corrupted data. Whether or not you take out a cyber insurance policy, here’s what you need to do to protect your company.
Three Tips For Securing Your Company’s Digital Assets From Cyber Threats
1. Create And Enforce A Strict IT Security Policy
Once you create your company security policy, it’s crucial to enforce it in the letter. Never give the impression that security requirements can be skipped for any reason.
For instance, sharing passwords should be forbidden and it’s important to enforce consequences when violations occur. Otherwise, someone might share a password with another employee who intends to do harm.
2. Tie Logins To Approved Devices
Multi-factor authentication is a good security measure, but it can fail when a person’s email is also compromised. If someone gets ahold of an employee’s email account, they can retrieve the code required to log into your company network. The best way to prevent this is to authenticate users based on registered devices so that each user account can only be successfully logged in from a pre-approved device.
3. Hire A Professional IT Security Team
The best way to secure your business is to hire a cybersecurity professional to assess your current setup and make recommendations for improvement. This takes all the guesswork out of the process and will help you get approved for cybersecurity insurance coverage.
You Need Insurance And Ongoing Threat Mitigation
Hopefully, this article has given you a better idea regarding how cybersecurity insurance alone isn’t enough to protect your business. A combination of ongoing threat assessment and mitigation with insurance is the ideal way to protect your business.