Soaring cyber-crime and high profile attacks on leading businesses like Talk Talk underline the importance of cyber-liability insurance says Brunel Professional Risks. The latest figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveal that there were 2.5m incidents of cyber-crime in the year to August in 2015. There were also over 5 million victims of financial fraud with more than half suffering financial loss according to ONS.

ONS says that, “criminals can now take advantage of new technologies such as the internet to both expand the scope of existing crime types and develop new ones, particularly in the area of fraud which has spawned new (cyber) crimes such as interference with internet and computer access.”

David Pollitt, partner and head of insurance at DAC Beachcroft expects growth in the cyber-liability market. “We think evolving data protection law could really boost cyber insurance policies, with data breaches set to become more costly.”

The Talk Talk attack will make many more firms focus on cyber-cover, believes James Burgoyne, Director – Claims & Technical, Brunel Professional Risks. “Professional firms need to think what a similar attack would mean to them, particularly if sensitive client data was targeted,” he said. “Firms need to ensure that they have robust cyber-security in place – backed up by effective cyber-liability insurance cover to help meet the cost if the worst happens. It’s not just about cover though. What happens in the first 48 hours when a business realises it is under attack is critical, and some of the insurance products now focus on additional “crisis response” services. At Brunel we can help our clients to select the most suitable cyber-liability cover for their needs.”

Statistics for cyber-crime have been published by the Office for National Statistics as part of the Crime Survey for England and Wales. Insurance Age and The Guardian have reported on the rapid rise in cyber-attacks.