Cyber crime costs Singapore businesses $1.6 b in 2014 but passive about insurance

Thursday, 19 February 2015 00:12 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Businesses in Singapore lost nearly S$ 2 billion (US$ 1.6 billion) last year due to data loss or unplanned downtime arising from cyber crime, but appear passive about taking out cyber insurance. Insurance companies are beginning to offer protection to firms as cyber attacks become increasingly sophisticated. Coverage can include the cost of investigative work and rectification, reported the Today newspaper. While interest is on the rise, insurers offering such policies here said uptake rates remain low. Market watchers say that a general lack of awareness, underestimation of the risks of security threats and few precedents for designing and setting premiums are impediments to the growth of this class of business. Last year, 66% of businesses in Singapore suffered data loss or unplanned downtime due to illicit cyber-activities, costing them an estimated S$ 1.9 billion, a Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) spokesperson told Today. To enhance the industry’s capabilities in providing cyber insurance coverage and managing cyber risks, the authority is working with the industry to create a test-bed for cyber risks. The MAS test-bed seeks to address the lack of a risk model and historical data to help the industry design and set premiums for cyber security policies, by simulating loss events and generating data, while raising awareness of cyber insurance. “In efforts to develop greater cyber security resilience, insurance can play an important role in helping organisations improve cyber controls and manage the financial impact from such events,” the MAS spokesperson said.