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Identifying the risks that can’t be seen

MD Ian Pollard and Claims Manager Petra Lucioli discuss the intangible nature of cyber risks with Insurance Business editor Ksenia Stepanova:

Insurance Business article

Dealing with emerging risks is challenging, especially when they’re not always visible to the eye. With the rise of digitisation in an increasingly online world, many of the risks faced by households and businesses are also becoming intangible – emerging in the form of cybersecurity breaches and intellectual property theft.

According to specialist insurer Delta Insurance, staying on top of emerging risks is becoming increasingly important for homes and businesses alike, and insurers and brokers need to work hard to keep their clients ahead of the curve.

“We are constantly challenging ourselves when it comes to emerging risks,” said Delta Insurance managing director Ian Pollard. “We have a budget set aside for research and development, we have a number of panel firms that constantly keep us updated and we’re also working closely with the government on its ongoing cybersecurity updates.”

“We’ve especially been looking at various types of personal risk as well as corporate risks,” he explained. “Homes are becoming more connected – we download music and use online banking every day, all our photos are stored in the cloud, etc. It’s an intangible world now, it’s not just about bricks and mortar, so we’re focusing on dealing with those intangible risks – IP, cyber security, reputational harm, and so on. We have a stream of two or three new products that we’re currently working on – it’s a very exciting space, and we’re constantly embracing that change.”

According to Pollard, the companies that treat cybersecurity as a board-level issue are the ones who tend to be better at dealing with those types of risks. Conversely, the firms who assume the risks aren’t present will experience more issues and security breaches, and will need to work closely with an adviser to ensure they are fully protected.

Claims manager Petra Lucioli also says that many people tend to be aware of the risks in general terms, but will stop short of having any detailed knowledge.

“This is one of the reasons that we have a lot of focus around the education piece and try our best to get the information out there,” said Lucioli. “Not only so that these firms can take out insurance, but also so they know where to look for the tools to put some risk management in place. If people have the knowledge, they can then take steps to reduce the risk and properly insure it.”

“We work very closely with the broker channel, and we also regularly go out to meet with customers and take the time to really understand what their challenges and needs are,” Pollard continued. “The types of risk we deal with require that kind of feedback because they’re not straightforward – it’s quite a tricky area, and it’s not one that can be thrown into a chatbot or an AI algorithm. As a result, that does require quite a lot of handholding with both the broker and the client.”

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