British firms trail behind US on cyber insurance

British businesses lag significantly behind companies in the United States when it comes to being insured against cyber-attacks, a new study has revealed.

The research, compiled by the Corporate Executive Programme (CEP), found that 13% of large and medium-sized businesses in Britain, which have an annual turnover between $1 million and $1 billion, have taken out insurance to cover cyber-attacks.

By comparison, approximately 40% of firms in the United States said they have insurance in place to cover them if they were to fall victim to cyber-crime. Out of all the participating companies that took place in the survey, just 20% said they had cyber insurance in place.  

The UK’s weaker take-up on cyber insurance policies in comparison to the US comes despite recent efforts made by the Government and insurance companies to increase the awareness of British businesses in regards to cyber security.

As part of the UK’s Cyber Security Strategy, in November 2014 the Government teamed up with the insurance sector to develop a number of cyber security measures and inform the private sector of the policies available to cover such incidents.

The UK government aim has been to collaborate with insurers in order to encourage companies to manage cyber risk.