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Instant Insights / October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed new cyber threats. Now's the time for insurance professionals and insureds to reexamine cybersecurity strategies and coverage.

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Technology springing from a hand. Increased connectivity subjects society to cyber vulnerabilities in even the most mundane activities. (Photo: Shutterstock)

What is cyber and why does it matter to insurers? In many ways, cyber is anything computer-based; any object with computer programming and coding that performs a series of actions based on commands can be considered cyber. Spreadsheets calculate mathematical equations; word processing documents obey formatting commands and check spelling and grammar. Cellphones work as telephones but also as calculators, cameras, timers, video games, can access the internet and perform a variety of other functions.

Today’s society is functionally connected to computers, and with advanced integration of computerized components into virtually every watch, appliance and automobile, this connectivity increases every day. Increased connectivity subjects society to cyber vulnerability in even the most mundane daily activities, from opening a refrigerator door to brushing teeth with an electric toothbrush.

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