Recent patterns in cybersecurity are not good; it seems that data breaches are occurring much more frequently and on larger scales, too. The past two years have seen record-breaking security breaches at companies like Equifax, where it is estimated that the Social Security numbers of approximately143 million people were compromised.
It’s not just financial services, either. Companies and organizations working in retail, healthcare, education, and government are all at risk of being hacked – along with the sensitive consumer information they store in their databases. Whether you own a business in one of these industries or you are simply concerned about the security of your own consumer information, continue reading to find out what you need to know about data breaches.
Guarding your passwords and installing security software on your computer may be a good start, but there really is not much you can do to stop the next big corporate data breach from exposing your personal information. What you can do is adopt habits and arm yourself with tools that will minimize any losses in the event you are victimized. These include:
Enrollment in Credit Monitoring
Credit monitoring services are designed to alert you when there is activity on your credit report. You may receive an email, text message, or some other notification when a new account is opened in your name or there is a change to the information in your reports, such as an address or job. The sooner you notice unauthorized activity, the faster you can dispute the charges and take action to prevent further damage.
Purchasing Identity Theft Insurance
Restoring a stolen identity can be costly and time-consuming – especially if it falls into the hands of multiple criminals. Identity theft insurance cannot pay for the liabilities charged to accounts in your name, but it can fund the cost of cleaning up your credit and defending your case after an attack. For example, identity theft coverage may cover the cost of taking time off work, hiring legal help and traveling when it is necessary for the restoration of your good name.
If you do not have identity theft insurance, you can purchase it through an independent agent here at Wheaton Insurance. We offer stand-alone policies, as well as coverage that can be added to your existing homeowners, renters, or condo insurance policy.
Checking Your Statements
Finally, keep an eye on your credit card and bank statements to spot unauthorized charges. If you notice suspicious activity, report it to your financial institution right away. You may be able to resolve the issue directly with your credit card issuer if you notice fraudulent charges and report them in a timely manner.
Protecting Your Business
Your business needs insurance against cybercrime for different reasons than you might need insurance for your personal identity. When you own a business – particularly one that obtains or stores any sensitive customer information – you need insurance that protects against the costs and liabilities of a data breach. These generally include:
- Virus removal costs
- Notifying customers/victims of the breach
- Paying for credit monitoring
- Legal expenses
- Fines and punitive damages
- Business interruption
To qualify for commercial data breach coverage, your business may need to meet certain underwriting standards. Though these may vary depending on your company’s industry, unique risks, and the insurer, they may include implementing contingency plans, updating your security software, training employees about cybersecurity, and submitting to periodic audits.
Identity Theft Insurance Quotes
Here at Wheaton Insurance, we know how important it is to protect your private data from the prying eyes of cybercriminals. While you may not be able to prevent large-scale data breaches from occurring; having the right insurance could protect you and your business against financial loss after an attack. For more information or to request your free identity theft and data breach insurance quotes, contact our office today.