Cyber Insurance – The Ideal Complement To Risk Management
A forward-thinking company must be aware of the risks of cybersecurity incidents that may affect business continuity. This knowledge is used to assess the short and medium-term effects of real threats, such as being affected by ransomware or an information leak, suffering an intrusion, and others similar to these real stories.
To avoid these situations, we suggest you prepare yourself and learn how to manage risks. You will have different options, as we will tell you later: accept them, avoid them, mitigate them or transfer them. A particular way to share them is to hire cyber insurance. By managing your risks, you will contribute preventively to guaranteeing the continuity of your business.
How Do You Prepare To Deal With An Incident
Acting with foresight is essential to partially or avoid the damage that an eventual security incident can cause. In addition, if it is not possible to prevent it, you will be better prepared to provide a forceful response that minimizes its effects. First, a study of the threats that can affect the company must be carried out; that is, a risk analysis must be started. If you have never done it, you can use our self-diagnosis tool to review in a simple and guided way what your information assets are, what threats you are exposed to, and where you should start taking care of the cybersecurity of your business.
Next, because of the results obtained, it is necessary to evaluate the risks in more detail, taking into account the probability that each threat will occur, and assess what it would cost to recover, that is, its impact. A tool known as a risk map is used to facilitate decision-making, which allows the data obtained in the previous analysis to be visually evaluated. According to a previously established priority, these maps help select the appropriate form of management of each specific risk. Some of these maps use colors to identify low, moderate, high, or extreme threats based on their likelihood and impact.
How To Manage Risk
Given the results of the risk map, the company may decide to take the following actions to counteract the effects of each possible risk:
- Accept The Risk: This option is valid in cases where if the threat were to materialize, it could cause damages of a tiny notable amount. In other words, it is tolerable, or they are minor risks, and therefore, the only action to take is to monitor that it does not occur, or if it does happen, to prevent its possible effects from increasing. This option defines our risk appetite, that is, how much we can risk. It is the most practical if the risks are low impact and low probability. For example, given the risk of losing a Pendrive with non-critical data, the least expensive thing is to buy a new one.
- Avoid or Eliminate Risk: This alternative is the opposite for very worrying threats. It consists of changing our process to avoid this risk, stop using the system or element that is threatened. We will choose it in those situations that are very frequent (high probability) and with many impacts. Also where it is possible to do things differently with minimal cost or when the activity is not essential to the company. For example, if we frequently use mobile devices to deal with critical data and it can be lost or ended up in the hands of third parties, it may be less risky to allow this data to be processed only when we are on our corporate team.
- Reduce or Mitigate It: In this option, we will have to implement technical and organizational measures that help make this risk disappear or at least minimize its effects. It is helpful for very probable risks and of medium or low impact. For example, suppose we use email, and there is a systematic risk of receiving emails with malware that makes us belong to a botnet. In that case, we can implement policies and technical mechanisms to detect them.
- Transfer The Risk: This alternative works in situations where the impact is very high, although its probability is medium or low. They are unique risks. In these cases, it is advantageous for the company if a third party or a subsidiary company undertakes to repair the damage.
In those risks in which the company has to allocate a high amount of resources to mitigate the harmful effects of the possible incident, it is convenient to study the option of transferring the risk to a third party, which may be a technology partner, a department of the company or insurance company. One way to communicate risks with technology partners is through service level agreements or SLAs.
These agreements allow the characteristics of the service to be established in writing, as well as the guarantees, certificates, and security measures required from the service provider to protect the information and ensure its availability. To do this, the service parameters (hours, capacity, response time.) must be included, which the provider undertakes to comply with to guarantee correct operation.
The penalties and compensation for the non-availability of the service and confidentiality or integrity failures, and the limitations of liability, that is, the cases in which nothing is required in case of happening. The SLAs can indicate the expected operation of the service, the certifications required from the supplier, guarantees of its availability, and the confidentiality and integrity of the communications, as well as, in the event of an incident, what is covered by the supplier and what the company assumes.