Every day there are news reports of companies being hacked and breached. In 2011 alone some 23 million confidential records were exposed through more than 414 reported security breaches, as reported by the national nonprofit Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC).
In 2012 these breaches just got bigger according to the 2012 Cyber Liability & Data Breach Insurance Claims Studyby NetDiligence. Highlights include: Global Payments (1.5 million records), Yahoo! (400 thousand passwords) Wyndham Hotels (600 thousand credit cards), eHarmony (1.5 million passwords), LinkedIn (6.5 million passwords) and the lists continue to grow.
All organizations, large or small, profit or nonprofit, are appealing to hackers. 75% of attacks took advantage ofnon-specific targets
These breaches happen quickly. 84% happen within minutes to hours
These breaches often go unnoticed with 66% remaining undiscovered until months later
75% of these attacks are driven by financial gain, so not just malicious intent
87% of breaches are discovered by outsiders–10% of them being customers
76% of breaches resulted from stolen credentials or weak networks
These reports on cyber security breaches underline the need that companies have to be proactive in protecting their data and establishing a plan to deal with a breach should one occur. Data hacking is nothing new. What is new is the amount of information companies have and the growing need for gatekeeping procedures to secure that data.
At AFPD, we’re keenly aware of the role risk management plays in the legal and dental practices with regulatory, financial and technical implications to consider along with sensitive customer data. With strong connections in the industry, AFPD team is poised to deliver customized malpractice insurance to you for your attorney and dental clients. Call us today 800-870-7750 or send your email inquiry to Underwriters@AFPD.net. We’ll review your client’s current policy promptly and offer you alternatives with our top rated insurance carriers.
Last week in “Making Your Life Easier!”, we showcased one of our new AFPD videos–an overview of our program with director, Brian DeGraw. In our continued effort to provide you with the most up-to-date information as quickly as possible, we’re featuring another video this week with program underwriter, Pamela Payton, who briefly discusses the information you need specific to Lawyers.
Check out all of the AFPD videos on our home page, or see the below video for Lawyers!
Over the next few weeks we will be bringing you the inside scoop, direct from our underwriting staff at AFPD, highlighting information valuable to insurance producers. First up is program underwriter, Ryan Fox.
Q: Ryan, how do you qualify eligible law firms?
A: Law firms are determined to be eligible through review of their Professional Liability applications. If a firm meets the criteria for a risk that falls within our appetite it is considered an eligible risk. We use firm location, areas of practice, claims history and firm makeup (staff, internal risk management) to make that determination. We carefully evaluate this information against our professional liability underwriting guidelines when making a decision to offer coverage in our program.
Q: What trends are you currently seeing in the market?
A: The big topic in the lawyers’ market this year is real estate. Due to recent loss trends, carriers are raising rates on firms who practice in this area—be it residential, commercial, or title—and some carriers are non-renewing this entire class from their book.
Q: Any recent successes you’d like to share?
A: Currently premiums are competitive, and I get a great deal of satisfaction from binding new business within one or two days of receiving an application. It shows that our commitment to service is a major factor in building our book of business.
Thanks for the scoop, Ryan! Tune in next week for more Q & A with the AFPD underwriting staff!
This week, AFPD tips brings you another example of a professional liability malpractice claim. What makes this claim significant, are the projected damages that the attorney will likely be forced to pay.
An attorney was retained to represent a client in a personal injury matter. As aresult of the attorney’s failure to respond to discovery requests, the case wasdismissed and the client sued for legal malpractice. Expenses in this matter areprojected to exceed $150,000 and damages could potentially exceed $500,000.
$500,000 In Damages!? Yes.
It’s easy to miss a deadline or lose sight of a task when dealing with multiple cases or taking on a hefty work load, but bear in mind a simple oversight can cost you. Without coverage, this attorney would have been forced to pay the damages out of pocket.
Check back next week for another claim example and
more tips to help keep you at low-risk for a malpractice suit!
This week we continue with AFPD tips by bringing you another real claim example recently filed with AFPD.
An attorney represented a client in a lawsuit in which the client sought to recover unpaid fees against a former business partner, as well as the value of future revenues pursuant to the business operating agreement. The attorney filed a motion for summary judgment and then proceeded to mediation. After a settlement had been reached, the client alleged that he was forced to settle the litigation and that the attorney was motivated by his own self-interest in obtaining his fee. Given the complexity of the damages analysis, expert fees are expected to exceed $60,000. Defense fees are expected to exceed $150,000 and damages are expected to reach $1,000,000.
Complex cases involving client disputes can lead to very high legal fees and disruptions to the law firm’s business. Without the assistance and coverage afforded under a lawyers’ malpractice policy, this attorney would have been forced to pay these costs out of his own pocket.
Check back next week for another claim example and more tips to help keep you at low-risk for a malpractice suit!