AXA XL brings in new global chief underwriting officer for cyber

The leader boasts nearly 20 years of experience

AXA XL brings in new global chief underwriting officer for cyber


By Ryan Smith

AXA XL has announced the appointment of Michael Colao as global chief underwriting officer for cyber. Colao will report to Libby Benet, global chief underwriting officer for financial lines.

“Michael brings a wealth of knowledge from his nearly 20 years as a senior cybersecurity expert in the financial industry,” Benet said. “His background and technical expertise will complement the underwriting talent within our global cyber team, providing a unique perspective into cyber risk.”

Colao will be based in London. In his new role, he will manage aggregate cyber exposure across AXA XL’s products globally. He will also develop and implement strong underwriting standards.

Colao most recently served as corporate chief security officer within AXA Group operations. In that role, he oversaw information security, physical security, and operational resilience for multiple entities within the group, including AXA XL. Prior to that, he served as chief security officer for AXA UK and Ireland, managing cybersecurity for 15 AXA-owned companies.

Colao represents the insurance industry in the Bank of England’s Cross-Market Operational Resilience Cyber Coordination Group and serves on the steering committee for the UK government’s Financial Services Cyber Coordination Centre. In 2020, he joined the Cyber Coordination Group’s cloud security working group, and third-party and supply chain risk working group.   

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