The clamor for improved cyber security offers insurers a great opportunity to strengthen ties with customers, expand products and services and, ultimately, drive up revenue.

Insurers have the right stuff to help their customers meet the huge security challenges of today’s complex and critical digital environment – not only with insurance, but also prevention and response.

And, there’s no doubt that organizations need help. Two thirds of executives contacted by Accenture Strategy in a recent global survey say their organizations experience significant attacks that test the resilience of their IT systems every week. Their operational technology systems are attacked nearly every day. Yet, only nine percent of executives surveyed by Accenture Strategy, in a further study on the intersection of business and technology, say they proactively run inward-directed attacks and intentional failures to test their systems.  A mere 25 percent consistently design resilience parameters into their operating model and technology architectures.

During this series of blogs I’ll discuss how carriers can build on their traditional strengths to help other organizations cope with the rising demands of cyber security.

Let’s look at what they can bring to the party:

Experience – Insurers have built their businesses on their ability to identify, price and mitigate risk.  They are uniquely placed to help commercial customers address the risks that threaten to undermine cyber security.  Just by asking the right questions, for example, they can alert these organizations to flaws in their security.

Expertise – Insurance companies recognize that catastrophes happen. Much of the focus of cyber security has been on deterring threats. And this is certainly important. But cyber breaches are inevitable. Most organizations are likely to succumb at some time. Insurers are experts in helping customers respond to disasters. Cyber security should be no different. The correct strategies, technologies and governance all need to be in place to ensure that organizations can meet the challenges of a cyber security breach and bounce back as quickly as possible.

Resources – Carriers already have the financial, organizational, knowledge and human resources to support customers as they build effective and robust cyber security.  They offer an array of products and services to help these organizations manage risk. These offerings can be enhanced and expanded to cater for the growing and changing demands of cyber security.

In my next blog I’ll take a closer look at how insurers can draw on their extensive experience in risk management to help their customers significantly strengthen their cyber security.

Until then, have a look at some of these links. I think you’ll find them useful.

The cyber security leap: From laggard to leader

Accenture Technology Labs: Holistic approach to cyber security operations

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