Cyber in the news

Increased cyber crimes likely as Covid-19 causes Kiwi businesses to adapt to online platforms

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Frankies thoughts:

The Covid-19 outbreak and imposed lockdowns has pushed many small kiwi business towards online means of doing business.

Frankie supports calls for such businesses to consider and understand the risks of going online. Online cyber criminals are aware of these developments and are out in force to find businesses with inadequate data protection.

Data breach and cyber crime risk has never been higher for small businesses and extra security practices and homework are required by owners and management.

We believe a cyber insurance policy combined with more stringent processes is essential for comprehensive protection against the risks of cyber crimes at your business. This also provides fundamental security for the details of your vital customers.

Cyber Security breaches to small business on the rise in New Zealand

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Frankies thoughts:

A recent survey released by Aura Information Security shows a worrying rise in cyber-attacks among small business in New Zealand. A survey of more than 360 found at least a third reported some kind of cyber attack over the past year representing a 10% year on year increase.

Cybercrime is paying increasingly well for cyber criminals and small businesses are vulnerable targets, with less security measures in place compared to larger companies in New Zealand.

The survey also highlights how many small businesses are not aware of impending changes to Privacy Bill changes.

New mandatory data breach notifications are required as part of the bill, but the survey found only half of Kiwi businesses are aware of these requirements, meaning they could be at risk of fines and breaches of the Privacy Bill if they suffer a future data breach.

It is promising to see that the report highlights more and more management are taking cyber security seriously. We hope Kiwi decision makers are considering adequate cyber liability insurance as part of these concerns, to provide them essential cover for what is an ever increasing risk to small and large businesses.

'They've hijacked my website' - Kiwi's business website taken over by apparent Islamic extremist hacker group

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Frankies thoughts:

The thought of having a website or business taken down by a hacker or hacking group is a chilling thought in itself, let alone having it attacked by an extremist hacker group.

A New Zealand woman, Ms Crystella, has had her business website "hijacked" by an apparent Islamic extremist hacker group, which replaced her site with photographs including ones depicting Isis flags. Ms Crystella said when she first noticed the hack, there was a timer on the page, which she worried could be linked to videos of Isis beheadings. Police told her the site needed to be "shut down immediately", because it posed a security risk, and quizzed her for 45 minutes asking "thorough" and "specific" questions.

Last June a number of Australian websites were targeted by the group, with one report claiming thousands were hacked in a single day. Australia's biggest car mechanic group, Ultratune, was hacked in May last year by the same group, in a hijacking which appeared to be making a statement about the conflict in the Middle East.

Why Cyber, Why Now


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Frankies thoughts:

Check out this great video featured on Insurance Business TV. It provides a more holistic view around the rise of cyber insurance, and why an SME should now expect his broker to discuss cyber insurance as a very real risk prevention strategy. The video covers a range of topics including how Cyber insurance is not new but has become increasingly relevant, especially with new legislation in place.

Computer hacker steals Kiwi's money before his eyes


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Frankies thoughts:

New Zealand had the fourth-highest number of cyber-attacks in the Asia Pacific region last year. Whether it is at home, or at the office, our connectedness with the internet these days means that we are at risk whenever and however we engage with every day life.

Tips for cybersecurity:

  • Make sure you're using not just strong passwords but unique ones.
  • Use longer passwords - sentences are good.
  • Check permissions and privacy policies before downloading an app.
  • Always change default log-in details and passwords.
  • Keep passwords updated.
  • Use security software and make sure it's up to date.
  • Don't click on suspicious links even if posted from friends or family.
  • Only input personal or bank info into a website you know is genuine.
  • But when all else fails, be sure that you have an adequate safety net in place should the worse occur so that you are not exposed.

Kiwi Companies Underestimating Risk of Cyber Attack


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Frankies thoughts:

A great article showcasing the NZ markets exposure to cyber threats and just what a business should consider when assessing its options for protection.

Key takeouts:

  • An anticipated one in every 300 (0.3%) businesses in New Zealand estimated to have cyber insurance in place
  • The majority of those that do have protection are large companies or companies that operate in the software industry who are very aware of the dangers.
  • There is a very real risk for any company that holds an electronic database with client information or operates an email system. A database could be hacked and private information can be accessed in an attack, leaving the business liable.
  • In terms of emails, a virus could be spread from a company's email system, and that company could be liable for the damage that does to others' systems.
  • The amount of insurance cover Kiwi companies need depends on their level of risk, the article says, "For a panel beater operating a private database and email, the minimum amount of $250,000 cover is probably adequate. However, for a company that operates entirely on a cloud system and that has revenue of $100million or more, that cover is going to have to be substantially higher. We know of a * handful of companies who buy a cyber-insurance policy with a $10million limit."