Loss Scenarios From External Cyber Threats

Cyber Loss Scenarios

Companies must remain vigilant about how their business would be affected if they were impacted by a cyber incident.

This list of loss scenarios from external Cyber threats explains the potential impact on a client’s business and describes how Chubb’s Incident Response Platform helped contain the Cyber threat:

*All currencies indicated are in USD

Scenario: Hack leads to extortion

A law firm’s network was hacked.

Sensitive client information was potentially at risk. This included a public company’s acquisition target, another public company’s prospective patent technology, the draft prospectus of a venture capital client, and a number of class-action lists containing plaintiff s’ personally identifiable information.

The firm then received a call requesting $18,400 to not sell the information on the black market.

As a Chubb cyber insured, the law firm initiated contact with Chubb’s Incident Response Hotline. Within 1-hour an Incident Response Manager was assigned to the event and within 5-hours IT forensic investigators and legal counsel commenced work addressing the incident.

Potential Impact

Privacy Liability
mismanagement of personal and/or corporate confidential information.
Network Security Liability
liability arising out of the failure to effectively protect insured’s network from malware, hacking, denial of service attacks or unauthorized use or access:
  • Defense and settlement costs for class action lawsuits.
$162,200
 
Incident Response Expenses:
  • Forensic investigation costs to locate vulnerability, analyze impact, ensure containment, and calculate extent of loss
$70,000
  • Costs to set up and operate a call center for inquiries
$6,600
  • Public relations expert fees to minimize reputational impact of the incident
$11,000
  • Legal consultation expenses
$25,800
  • Incident Response Manager fees.
$7,400
 
Cyber Extortion 
costs associated with addressing extortion threats to release information or malicious code unless paid extortion monies:
  • Crisis negotiator fees
$3,700
  • Legal consultation fees
$1,800
  • Information Technology consultant fees
$25,800
  • Extortion payment
$18,400
Total Cost: $332,700

Takeaways

By telephoning the Chubb Incident Response Hotline, the Incident Manager informed the client that the Cyber ransom should not be paid. Many clients may not be aware of this. We have seen cases where the ransom has been paid and the information has still been published online. There is a risk that if the ransom is not paid, the information will be released, but the Incident Response Manager will make sure the correct experts such as forensic investigators and legal counsel experienced in cyber extortion were appointed to manage the situation.  

Scenario: Unauthorized Access

Hackers gained unauthorized access to account information located on a school district’s network due to an unknown vulnerability.

The account information included names, email addresses, national ID numbers, and financial account information of 20,000 past and present teachers and students. After multiple students and teachers reported suspicious activity on their email, IT discovers that an unauthorized user was in the system.

The school district telephoned the Chubb Incident Response Hotline and an Incident Response Manager was assigned.

Potential Impact

Privacy Liability
mismanagement of personal and/or corporate confidential information:
  • Defense expenses arising from regulatory investigation due to irresponsible management of private information
$110,600
  • Defense and settlement costs for claims from that had identity stolen.
$40,600

Network Security Liability
failure to effectively protect insured’s network from malware, hacking, denial of service attacks or unauthorized use or access.

Incident Response Expenses:
  • Forensic investigation costs to locate vulnerability, analyze impact, ensure containment, and calculate extent of loss
$125,400
  • Notification to affected individuals
$700
  • Identity theft monitoring services to aff ected individuals
$4,400
  • Costs to set up and operate a call center for inquiries
$6,600
  • Public relations expert fees to minimize reputational impact of the incident
$6,600
  • Legal consultation fees
$7,300
  • Incident Response Manager fees.
$6,600
Total Cost: $311,800

Takeaways

This scenario highlights the importance of storing sensitive information under the necessary protections. Up to date firewalls, intrusion detection software, and encryption of databases are just a few ways to responsibly maintain the privacy of employee and customer information.

This example also highlights the many ways Chubb’s policy may respond to cyber events. The Incident Response Manager provides assistance in organizing the many different services required to respond to this one incident, from forensic investigation costs, defense costs and public relations expenses and more.

Scenario: Denial of Service Attack

The data center which hosted an online retail company’s website became the target of a distributed denial of service attack.

The attack, which utilized hacked internet of things devices, flooded the data center’s network with so much traffic that their network failed. This made the online retail company’s website inaccessible for a period of six hours before backup systems were able to restore 100% functionality. After telephoning the Chubb Incident Response Hotline, an Incident Response Manager was assigned.

Potential Impact

Recovery Costs:
  • Increased cost of working required to get website functioning properly
$13,200
  • Costs to subcontract with external service provider
$17,000
Business Interruption:
  • Lost sales and revenue from website downtime.
$105,100
Incident Response Expenses:
  • IT forensics firm
$16,200
  • Legal consultation fees
$11,000
  • Incident Response Manager fees
$4,400
Total Cost: $166,900

Takeaways

As the use of internet of things devices increases, Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks are becoming more common and more powerful. 

To minimize the impact of a scenario like this, it is important to build a business continuity plan that ensures critical business applications, systems, and activities do not rely on only one single IT provider.

Chubb’s incident response managers and trusted Cyber vendors are experienced in dealing with DDoS attacks and will assist in getting your business back on track as soon as possible. 

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