Empowering the Freelance Economy

Cyber insurance: the new must-have for freelancers?

Photo credit: Harry Parvin
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Figures collected by cyber security company Nexor found that the UK experienced a 31% rise in cybercrime amid the pandemic. How did freelancers react?

Cyber-attacks on UK home workers were up 48% in the first six weeks of lockdown, so the rise in cyber insurance uptake suggests companies have become aware of the added risks of employees and freelancers working remotely and took extra precautions.

The UK’s lockdown was a catalyst for a notable increase in small businesses and self-employed professionals taking out cyber insurance policies.

Data analysis by PolicyBee shows that cyber insurance sales increased by over 75% after lockdown was put in place in comparison to the number of policies sold in the first quarter of 2020.

Which freelance professions took out the most protection in 2020?

There was a particular spike in cyber insurance taken out by virtual assistants, who bought almost 30% of all policies sold in 2020, said PolicyBee.

Virtual assistants (VAs), who usually work entirely online, purchased more cyber insurance products from PolicyBee in 2020 than any other business sector.

Some trade associations for VAs now make having cyber insurance a condition of membership, which shows how serious a threat to their members they believe cyber-attacks pose.

Second to VAs in 2020 cyber policy sales was the IT sector. Naturally, IT professionals were in demand during the UK’s lockdown as businesses required support with challenges such as remote working or increasing their brand’s online presence.

What does cyber insurance cover?

“Cyber insurance covers the cost of repairing and restoring IT systems and data following a breach, and covers legal costs involved when informing clients and regulators such as the Information Commissioner’s Office,” said Sarah Adams, cyber insurance expert at PolicyBee.

“In situations where a business takes legal action due to the loss of their data, cyber insurance also pays the associated legal fees and compensation, if it comes to that,” she said.

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