Thursday 19 September, 2019

GraceKennedy enters cyber-insurance market

Chief operating officer at GraceKennedy Financial Group, Steven Whittingham described the product, Cyber Control - as a game-changer for the local market.

Chief operating officer at GraceKennedy Financial Group, Steven Whittingham described the product, Cyber Control - as a game-changer for the local market.

Local insurance provider GK Insurance (GKI) is introducing a cyber-insurance product designed to help businesses and individuals survive cyberattacks by offsetting the costs of recovery. 

Chief operating officer at GraceKennedy Financial Group, Steven Whittingham described the product, Cyber Control - as a game-changer for the local market, providing peace of mind in an age and time where cyber-attacks are no longer the anomaly but the norm. 

He said GKI’s rollout of the product was timely, with cybercrimes costing Jamaica in excess of US$100 million over the last three years. 

“In this day and age, we have all become reliant on technology to function in our day-to-day lives. This reliance results in the increased exposure to cyber criminals and cyber risks,” he said.

Speaking at the product’s launch event at the R Hotel in Kingston on Wednesday, Whittingham said: “Cyber protection in the form of cyber insurance builds up the resilience of individuals and companies. It provides a measure of defence in the event of an attack, but more importantly, it implements an action plan with clear-cut steps when there is an attack.”

Wills Re's Broking Director for the Caribbean, Mark Ferguson

GKI has partnered with London-based companies Tokio Marine Kiln, a global specialist insurance company and reinsurance company Willis Tower Watson for Cyber Control, which offers individual and commercial coverage. 

According to Wills Re's Broking Director for the Caribbean, Mark Ferguson cyber risk now ranks as one of the top enterprise-wide risks facing organisations today.

Cyber risks include hacker attacks, viruses, human error, employee dishonesty and system failure. The consequence according to Ferguson range from reputational damage, crisis management, loss of income to data restoration costs. 

"Traditional insurance policies may not respond to these new risks. They were developed to protect against physical triggers such as fire, flood - leading to physical outcomes such as property damage or bodily injury, rather than data networks and intangible assets," Ferguson said. 

CEO at tTech, Christopher Reckord (left) Jordan Tait, Manager - Innovation and Risk at GK Insurance and Mark Ferguson, Broker Director at Willis Re.

GKI's Cyber Control individual and commercial coverages are offered as add-ons to enhance existing policies that GKI clients hold such as property or liability insurance. Fees start from US$65 per annum for an individual policy and at US$150 per annum for a commercial policy. 

A commercial policy generally covers costs associated with business interruption, digital asset disruption, incident response expenses, regulatory defence, legal fees and suits, to name a few.  

While for individuals policy covers the costs of replacing the insured’s computer, laptop, mobile phones or laptop and will even cover the cost to restore programmes. 

Cyber Control will also provide customers with access to a 24-hour hotline to assist in responding to incidents covered by the GKI policy and mitigate against damage to business.

The insurance product will be made available to the local market on July 1 and will be accessible at GKI’s branches, agents and broker partners across the island. 

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