IT Insight: Learn about cybersecurity and cyber insurance at Oct. 14 webinar

Data breach: It’s not a matter of if, but when.

With an alarming uptick in data breaches and ransomware this past year, an increasing number of businesses have opted to add Cyber Risk Insurance to help protect themselves from a catastrophic loss. If you are properly covered with cyber insurance and meet your carriers checklist, your business will be better suited to mitigate the impact of an ill-intentioned attack.

Learn about cyber insurance at the Cybersecurity/Cyber Insurance and Compliance Webinar offered through PCGiT on Thursday, Oct. 14. Register your business at or call PCGiT at 603-426-5131.

What is a cybercriminal after? Your data: payment card history, critical files and protected trade secrets, protected health information, personal data such as social security identification, birthdates, addresses, PayPal accounts, Cloud data and more.  With cyber activity and ransom attacks doubling every three months, now is the time to protect your data!

According to Cybersecurity Ventures, cybercrime damages are predicted to cost the world $6 trillion annually this year, up from $3 trillion in 2015, and is more profitable than the global trade of all major illegal drugs combined.

The impact of a cybercrime is expensive and extremely disruptive to your company’s reputation. You’ll have to obtain an incident response and forensic analysis to determine what data was stolen. As you handle mandatory reports and public relations, you may lose your reputation and customers. Crises services such as forensics, credit monitoring and related expenses can cost into the hundreds of thousands and even into millions of dollars.

Who is at risk? All businesses large and small. Cybercriminals find just as much opportunity attacking small companies as large. Primary targets are most often businesses with less than 100 employees or $50 million in revenue. Most often, smaller businesses have fewer protective measures in place and are simply more vulnerable. With 1 in 5 small businesses experiencing this trend, 85% will go out of business within 6 months.

However, as the threat landscape continues to expand, many insurance companies are restricting payouts by creating more claim exceptions and exclusions. This leaves many policy-holders vulnerable to holding the short end of the stick when the insurer looks to disqualify a claim. How do you know what a policy should include and how to best protect your business data?

An overview of the current state of cyber security threats and events is foremost, evaluating general concerns, industry specific policy requirements and the insurance guidelines that dictate your industry specific needs. Your Managed Service and Security Provider can ascertain a baseline of what your business has for data and what security you have currently in place such as multi-factor authentication, a business continuity plan, employee background checks, a secure system in your business for locks and activity.  What is being monitored and where are gaps and vulnerabilities?

From there,  an audit against your existing cyber insurance policy occurs addressing the following information: Do you have the right coverage? Do you have the right language? Do you have the right services in place? Ultimately, if something happens, are you properly protected?

The type and cost of cyber insurance depends on your industry, what you are trying to protect and even your revenue. Is there a lot of credit card processing, personal information, financial data, medical information? An industry such as these will have much higher rates than an auto body shop, for instance.

Many questions are addressed in a proper assessment: What are you really trying to protect? How big of a company are you? What’s your required uptime? If you cannot afford any downtime, what is the right amount of coverage?

At PCGiT, we will guide you to the right decisions to protect your business from Cyber Threats.  We will address general concerns, Industry specific policy requirements and Cyber Insurance guidelines. We will discuss how a Cyber Risk Assessment is conducted and run against your company’s security configuration and posture including the phases that make up a security assessment from start to finish. We will share what to expect during the phases that will involve you for company specific data and discuss the tools we use to complete the assessment and a timeline for a typical assessment. Upon completion, we will generate reports to guide you to determine your insurance needs, so you are not left underinsured.

With an emphasis on assessment of needs and coverage prerequisites, prevention is the key to success.

The upcoming Cybersecurity/Cyber Insurance and Compliance Webinar offered through PCGiT, Thursday, Oct. 14 from 8 to 9 a.m. is open for registration. Register at or call PCGiT at 603-426-5131.

JoAnn Hodgdon is vice president and co-founder of Portsmouth Computer Group (PCGiT) with her husband David. PCG provides comprehensive managed IT services, business continuity, security, cloud computing and Virtual CIO services to their clients.  You may reach her at  or at