By Nico Strydom
The Covid-19 pandemic and concomitant lockdown have once more highlighted the matter of cyber security.
According to experts people that work from home instead of in their workplaces become easier victims of cyber crime. Cyber security was already a huge problem in South Africa before the Covid -19 pandemic.
According to a report by the consulting company Accenture, South Africa had the third most cyber crime victims in the world in 2019 with a resultant estimated loss of R2,2 billion. Cyber criminals are, inter alia, under the impression that South African companies have fewer defensive mechanisms. They also think that there is a smaller chance of being brought to book in terms of cyber crime legislation in South Africa.
Recent statistics show a tenfold increase in attacks on digital networks in South Africa since the declaration of the national state of disaster in March. Charl Ueckermann, CEO of AVeS Cyber Security, emphasises that the management of cyber risk should not be taken lightly.
According to Ueckermann the situation resulted in insurers now including corporate cyber security in their offer in order to lower their clients’ exposure to risk and to avoid claims. “Insurers are reaching out to IT security experts to find solutions incorporating proactive cyber security instruments to lower the risk of attacks on their clients.”
However, the provision of cyber insurance is not enough. With the increase in cyber theft and fraud, cyber security interventions are an essential part of risk management. “The more proactive you are about the management of cyber risks, the lower the client’s risk exposure will be and the less likely that they will be attacked and suffer losses. It is sensible to encourage policy holders to take appropriate steps to lessen cyber risks to themselves and the insurer.”
Ueckermann adds that leading insurers realise the value of cyber insurance and the additional benefits of including cyber security solutions in their offer.
“It is very important for brokers to understand cyber security as a integral part of the cyber insurance offer. Security providers that offer cyber security benefits, offer a more holistic solution to protect their clients and lower their exposure to risk. ”
Cyber criminals are thriving in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. “Phishing, malware, cyber theft and fraud are all on the increase. Insurance providers should look at the problem holistically and approach it proactively by building in remedies in the IT security products as well as awareness of cyber threats for their clients.”
AVeS Cyber Security: https://aves.co.za/