Unless you live off-the-grid, chances are your private information has been compromised at least once. Data breaches are becoming increasingly common, and not even the biggest businesses are immune to their effects. In just the past couple of years, billions of user accounts have been hacked, exposing credit card numbers, passwords, and other sensitive information stored with companies like Yahoo, Target, and Equifax. While you may not be able to stop the next attack, there are steps you can take to better protect yourself and your business against the damaging consequences of a data breach.
There is a dark web out there where cybercriminals sell and exchange stolen consumer data for personal gain. With your credit card numbers, they can amass thousands of dollars in debt by making large purchases without your knowledge. With your Social Security number and other sensitive data, they may even be able to open credit lines or take out loans in your name, taking off with the money and leaving you with the financial responsibility of paying the bill. Clearing up your credit can take weeks, months, or even years – all while your credit score and ability to borrow takes a big hit.
When it comes to identity theft, you can minimize damage by putting a stop to fraudulent activity as quickly as possible. Start by enrolling in a credit monitoring program that will keep an eye on the activity in your credit report and notify you of any changes. Then, make a habit of reviewing your financial statements on a regular basis and reporting suspicious activity right away. You may not be liable for fraudulent credit card charges if you report them in a timely manner. If you discover someone is using your information to open new accounts; contact the credit bureaus to ‘freeze’ your credit and prevent new inquiries.
Identity Theft Insurance
Another important step is purchasing identity theft insurance. You can file a claim against this type of coverage to help cover the cost of recovering your good name and restoring your credit after your private information is compromised. While it will not pay for the liabilities fraudulently created in your name, it can relieve you of the financial burden that can come with defending yourself against the activities of cybercriminals. Talk to an agent here at Lillie-Couch Insurance about how you can purchase a stand-alone identity theft insurance policy or add this important coverage to your existing homeowners, condo-owners, or renters insurance.
Protect your Business
As a business owner, you probably already have insurance that protects you if an employee is injured on the job or a client suffers a loss due to negligence, product failure, errors, or other incidents. With the threat of cybercrime on the rise, it is more important than ever to include coverage against data breaches in your insurance portfolio, too.
If a virus infects your business software and leaches the sensitive information of your customers, you could be held liable. Insurance can help pay for the cost of legal expenses, notifying your customers, and paying for credit monitoring. It can also help you pay for professional virus removal and site reconstruction if necessary.
Underwriters may require that your business implement prevention protocols designed to minimize the risk of loss to qualify for commercial cybercrime insurance. This often includes professional security training for staff members, third-party audits, and regular software updates. Our team will be happy to answer any questions you may have and assist you with choosing the coverage that is right for you.
Call us today for more information or to request your free quotes. We look forward to serving you soon.