Asian businesses are lagging behind their US counterparts in obtaining cyber insurance, despite an increase in global awareness following the WannaCry ransomware attack, general insurer FM Global has stated.
Less than 20% of businesses in Asia have insurance against cyberattacks, compared to around 66% in the US, revealed Grace Ries, FM Global’s vice president and manager of cyber risk insurance.
Cybersecurity complaints reached a record high in 2017, with an 80% increase in malware attacks, reported South China Morning Post, citing data from the Hong Kong Computer Emergency Response Team (HKCERT). The Hong Kong information security watchdog also predicted a surge of malware attacks this year.
According to Ries, Asia is just now learning to deal with cyberattacks, and, fortunately, awareness is now increasing.
Last week, internet service provider Hong Kong Broadband Network reported that around 380,000 customers were affected by a personal data breach, which included information on 40,000 credit cards.
Worldwide, there were almost 53,000 cybersecurity incidents and 2,216 confirmed data breaches last year, according to US telecoms giant Verizon’s 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report. Around 40% of cases were Denial of Service (DoS) attacks, where cyber criminals use hijacked and virus-infected devices to flood and overwhelm their target websites to bring them down.
In 2003, FM Global’s property insurance package began to cover DoS attacks as part of non-physical damage caused to computer systems, Ries said. The growth of cloud computing among businesses also led the insurer to include cloud coverage in its product.
“[Cloud computing] now creates a different exposure to cyber risk since such service providers are out of their control,” Ries said.
She also advised firms to get ahead of risks by actively searching for gaps in their systems’ protections and plugging these holes.
“Most loss is preventable, including cyber,” Ries concluded, encouraging businesses to become more proactive in dealing with cyber risks.