Massive Equifax Hack and Its Effects
Equifax, one of the nation’s three major data collection agencies, announced on Sept. 7 that hackers accessed the private information of about 143 million individuals, including names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and driver’s license numbers. Credit card numbers were also accessed for about 209,000 individuals and dispute records for another 182,000.
Equifax’s insurance against cyber breaches is likely inadequate to cover the credit-reporting company’s costs tied to one of the biggest hacks in history, according to people familiar with the coverage who spoke with Bloomberg. The company holds a policy that would probably cover about $100 million to $150 million, with costs shared by carriers in the London market and elsewhere, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing a private contract. Though Equifax’s eventual expense may not be known for years, financial analysts say it could be multiples higher than the insurance payout, given what the company has disclosed.
The Equifax breach isa chance for agents and brokers to illustrate just how catastrophic a cyber breach can be for business, according to cybersecurity executive Sidd Gavirneni, CEO and co-founder of Zeguro, a San Francisco-based cyber insurance MGA that provides cybersecurity services. This will be a chance to “provide customers with insights into why and how the Equifax breach happened, and help them understand the cyber risks their businesses face,” he said. “Only then can they understand the real need for cyber insurance.”