It’s not all wine and roses: the fundamental openness of the digital insurance model means a new level of protection against threats is vital.
We’ve been talking about digital innovation generally, and how to spread a digital culture more effectively across the company. But we must not lose sight of the fact that the need for cyber-security grows in tandem with digital transformation. For that reason, ensuring that the company has the right security skills and resilience architecture in place from the beginning will be vital, especially as security will be enhanced if the systems and processes are designed correctly in the first place.
Unsurprisingly, security was a theme that cropped up several times at the recent meeting of the Accenture Digital Insurance Network.
The reason for this growing emphasis on cyber-security is the increased openness that lies at the center of the digital value proposition. Much closer interaction with customers means opening up your systems to them—especially as self-service becomes more and more integrated into the picture.
At the same time, though, it has to be faced that this openness will extend to a growing circle of business partners as well. As I’ve previously noted in these blogs, it’s likely that in order to meet a growing range of customer needs and deepen customer intimacy, the insurer will find itself becoming part of an ecosystem of providers, what we call the borderless insurer. This ecosystem will share a lot of customer and other data and will collaborate extensively. (Read my blogs Simple vs complex, and the battle to protect margins and markets, and Honing in on the target: Data Monetization 2.0 to explore the ecosystem concept a little more.)
A further consideration that must be factored into any strategies for digital transformation is the growing regulatory interest in, and protection of, personal data. Much of the data that digital insurers will use falls into this category, and thus there are compliance issues.
It’s not just compliance, though. The compromising of customer data is also a sure way to erode customer trust.
The problem of cyber-crime has been well publicized, and the statistics are certainly daunting. But it’s not an argument for shying away from digital transformation—the benefits are too compelling and customer demand is too insistent; but it is an argument for incorporating security and resilience into your digital solutions right from the start.
“Architecting for resilience” is one of the six trends identified in the Accenture Technology Vision 2014 for Insurance.