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Insurer launches ransomware solution following hefty increase in criminal-related cyber losses


March 23, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter


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Chubb’s Global Cyber Risk Practice has launched a service to help policyholders with ransomware attacks in the wake of a 430% hike in the insurer’s criminal-related cyber losses over the past five years.

Cyber-keyboard darkChubb’s new cyber extortion solution can immediately connect impacted policyholders with cyber experts to help assess the scope of an attack,” notes a statement Tuesday from the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurance company, with operations in 54 countries, including Canada. The Global Cyber Risk Practice services the insurer’s network of 620 global offices, including 48 branch offices in North America.

“Threat assessment is a critical component of this service because ransomware is sometimes used to disguise a much larger attack, often slowing the discovery of a data breach and leading to a much greater loss,” reports the company, which offered its first cyber risk product in 1998. Security specialists “can also help policyholders determine the appropriate course of action and, if necessary, assist with ransom payments, including through the use of bitcoin technology,” the statement adds.

“Similar to data breaches, many businesses are not equipped to deal with a cyber extortion attempt, where the timeliness of the response is even more critical,” Toby Merrill, Chubb’s division senior vice president and global cyber risk practice leader, cautions in the statement.

“If not handled properly, recently publicized cases show that ransomware can be just as damaging as data breaches to a company’s reputation and balance sheet,” Merrill points out.