Research outfit Finaccord forecasts that the market for professional indemnity insurance across ten European countries – namely, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Switzerland and the UK - will be worth around EUR7.5 billion by 2017. Finaccord also calculates that gross written premiums for this form of insurance amounted to around EUR 6.78 billion across the then countries in 2013, having grown from approximately EUR 6.15 billion in 2009
Catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide estimates that insured wind losses from Extratropical Cyclone Xaver will range between EUR 700 million and EUR1.4bn, with the majority of the losses in Denmark, Germany, and the UK. Losses also occurred in the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, and Norway.
Argent Risk Management Consulting in collaboration with Cranfield University's Transport and Safety Engineering Division have developed a joint risk management solution for the aviation industry which aims to address the current industry trend towards the criminalisation of aviation accidents.
The Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) is to open up membership of its newly-formed power generation panel to the companies insurance market to ensure London’s power underwriters have the strongest possible voice. The decision means that at least five places on the panel will be filled by representatives of the companies market following an election being run by the LMA and the International Underwriting Association during December.
As profitability is more difficult to find than prior to the financial crisis, 2014 will be a year of foundational investment for the financial markets, with the primary focus on investment in IT infrastructure, according to new research from Ovum. This investment is required for finding new opportunities to drive profit, by moving into new markets, trading venues, geographies and asset classes.
Steps to promote good engineering design to help cut the death, injury and disease toll in Britain’s workplaces, and enhance public safety, are outlined in a new policy paper launched today by a group of safety and industry bodies. In 2012-13, nearly 150 people were killed at work in Great Britain, and an estimated 175,000 were seriously injured.
Aon Benfield’s Impact Forecasting arm has launched the first probabilistic catastrophe model to understand the financial impact of flood damage in the Netherlands for property and motor. Flood, along with wind, is one of the most prevalent natural perils in the Netherlands, having experienced notable floods in 1953, 1993 and 1995.
US Risk (UK) has launched a new Lloyd’s MGA. With capacity from Lloyd’s syndicates and non-Lloyd’s insurers, Lime Underwriting will initially concentrate on the UK and international financial lines sector, including professional indemnity, D&O, management liability, pension trustees liability and commercial crime – all in both the regional and London markets.
Beazley has launched three new expanded policy wordings offering broad protection to individuals, including cover for the growing threat posed by regulatory investigations and inquiries. The risks confronting directors and officers have evolved significantly in recent years with exposures now extending well beyond traditional claims.
Legal expenses insurer, DAS has appointed Dr Thomas Jannakos as their CFO and board director. He takes over from the recently retired CFO Paul Gibson. Dr Jannakos joins DAS from parent company, Munich Re in Munich, where he was head of department corporate performance management. He has worked for Munich Re since 2005.
A PwC poll of insurance industry executives reveals that the vast majority (91%) agree that big data/analytics will be a main source of competitive differentiation for insurers in the future. The poll also showed that over 90% of respondents think big data will be the main driver in the transformation of insurance companies’ business model.
HM Treasury has announced plans for its insurance growth scheme, which includes the intention to launch a gateway project for people seeking to find apprenticeships and graduate training places within insurance. Dr Sandy Scott, CII chief executive hailed the announcement a vote of confidence for the work of the CII to promote apprenticeships, in particular its Discover Risk initiative.
Less than six weeks after Winter Storm Christian, a fresh Winter Storm Xaver hit north of Scotland during the overnight hours. Wind gusts of more than 140 mph (225 km/h) were recorded in the Scottish Highlands, and across the northern UK there have been gusts of between 60 and 80 mph (96 and 128 km/h), with 100 mph (160 km/h) gusts recorded in mountain areas.
The European Commission has fined eight international financial institutions a total of €1,712,468 for participating in illegal cartels in markets for financial derivatives covering the European Economic Area. Four of these institutions participated in a cartel relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in the euro currency. Six of them participated in one or more bilateral cartels relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in Japanese yen. The EIRD cartel operated between September 2005 and May 2008. The settling parties are Barclays, Deutsche Bank, RBS and Société Générale.
The British Insurance Brokers' Association has urged the Water Bill Scrutiny Committee to consider helping those that the bill in its current form specifically excludes. The key concerns raised by BIBA members are around the exclusions in Flood Re.
Lack of management attention, compounded by lack of skilled resources, management tools and processes, is hampering companies’ ability to manage a range of new and emerging risks, according to a survey of 650 companies in Europe, the Middle East and Africa conducted for global insurer ACE’s EMEA Emerging Risks Barometer 2013.
Insurance executives from around the world have cast more than 30,000 votes to rate a global pandemic, natural catastrophes and a food/water/energy crisis as the three categories of extreme risk that are of most significance to the insurance industry. Other extreme risks featuring in the top 10 included cyber warfare, an economic depression, a banking crisis, and a default by a major sovereign borrower.
With the world’s technology sector now worth almost US$6 trillion, technology and telecommunication companies are growing at a rapid pace, leading to new exposures and the need to cover specific liabilities. Hardware and software engineers, designers and IT consultants can be exposed to huge claims if the systems they build or host should fail or are hacked.
Inmarsat has extended its appointment of Willis’s Inspace team as its space risk management adviser and placing broker. This encompasses Inmarsat's entire in orbit satellite fleet as well as its future launches.
JLT has acquired South African employee benefits and healthcare broker and consultant. Eluleka Consulting PYT. Eluleka is based in Johannesburg and employs nearly 40 people with a focus on providing healthcare advice and employee benefit services to corporates
GAB Robins has reported a 76% retention rate for employers liability and public liability injury claims within the Ministry of Justice claims portal – up to 15% higher than the industry average.
Agencyport Software has won a contract to provide WhiteOak Underwriting Agency with Open Core Platform: MGA, its MGA policy administration solution.
Open Core Platform: MGA will be the administration platform for the entire WhiteOak business, starting with capture and standardisation of bordereaux through underwriting, accounting, claims processing and reporting functions, and linking the whole process.
Independent scientific environmental consultancy ESI Ltd has launched a new service providing environmental risk reports to the UK market. Envirep provides desk study environmental risk reports covering contaminated land, flood risk and drainage, and ground stability.Each report is individually produced and clearly identifies likely site specific risks, and solutions to limit such risks.
Following the publication of the Environment Agency’s figures revealing that flooding in England in 2012 could have cost the UK economy close to £600million, ABI director-general Otto Thoresen has emphasised the crucial role of insurers in minimising the impact of flood risk.
ACE Group has announced the launch of ACE Global Export Protection, a new risk management proposition for companies in Continental Europe. According to the EU, China is now the EU’s third largest export destination while Asian markets collectively account for a third of EU exports. At the same time, the litigious US market remains the EU’s number one export destination and is shortly expected to introduce a suite of new export regulations.
Volatile weather activity is increasing around the world as evidenced by recent major events. Yet, while extreme events may capture the headlines, minor fluctuations in expected weather can have big impacts on business performance across a wide range of industries. A new report from Allianz focuses on the growing importance of weather risks for businesses highlights the economic impact of fluctuating weather conditions.
Aon Global Risk Consulting has teamed up with Optial UK to create an integrated governance, risk and compliance (GRC) system for the commercial insurance and reinsurance sector. The new GRC platform facilitates the connection of board level vision and strategy with real day-to-day operational controls and processes, thereby defining and realising a clear operating model that remains proportionate to specific requirements.
AIG has gone live with a single, cross border trading solution that will allow participating brokers to process quotes; bind new business; and make mid-term changes, and renewals in real-time. The platform, which will cover five countries and languages, and three product lines, will offer participating brokers a secure log-in and the ability to trade across select key product lines in real-time.
One year on from some of the worst flooding in 2012, latest research by the Environment Agency reveals that last year’s record-breaking wet year in England could have cost the UK economy close to £600 million. The overall financial cost to businesses of the extreme weather was up to £200m as total commercial property and contents damage totalled up to £84m, and further indirect impacts – such as staff working days lost – hit companies and local economies for up to £33m.
This year’s winners were announced and awarded last night at a gala dinner held at the Grosvenor House Hotel on London’s Park Lane. Barclays walked away with two awards – for GRC Initiative of the Year and Best use of Technology. This year’s overall winner was Aberdeen City Council. Sponsored by Marsh Risk Consulting, Misys and Simudyne, the annual Risk Management Awards are the definitive mark of achievement in the sector.
The CII’s 2013 New Generation programme has published a detailed report into flooding in the UK, outlining their views on the proposals set to replace the Statement of Principles agreed in 2002 between the government and the insurance industry. The report, UK flooding: the implications for the insurance market, provides well researched analysis following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the ABI and the government on how to develop Flood Re.
xMatters has partnered with New Relic to allow clients to create their own custom messaging applications. With the new integration, joint customers can instantly notify, escalate and collaborate on New Relic alerts using custom built messaging capabilities through a variety of mediums including voice, email, pager and SMS.
FireEye has announced the introduction of FireEye Email Threat Prevention, a new cloud-based email security platform. With no hardware or software to install, FireEye now offers a flexible deployment option to protect enterprise infrastructure from email-based attacks. FireEye Email Threat Prevention will be generally available in early December 2013.
Willis Re, KatRisk LLC and SpatialKey have announced a strategic partnership to offer Willis Re clients new analytical capabilities for proactively managing flood accumulations.
An outbreak of intense late-season thunderstorms accompanied by high winds, hail, and dozens of tornadoes swept across the Midwest, flattening hundreds of homes. While tornadoes were sighted in several states, the most damaging twisters occurred in central Illinois. According to preliminary reports from the NOAA Storm Prediction Center (SPC), 80 tornadoes were produced by this severe thunderstorm outbreak, making it the second most active severe weather day of 2013 for the US.
The number of catastrophe bonds outstanding could more than double from the current level of US$19bn to US$50bn by the end of 2018, according to a report from BNY Mellon. Globally, natural catastrophes cost the insurance industry approximately US$13bn in the first half of 2013, and the overall economic losses were estimated at around US$45bn. The industry therefore covered less than one third of natural catastrophes, leaving a global disaster gap of US$32bn.
The TT Club is to provide liability cover for London Gateway, the UK’s largest deep-sea container port, which is designed with an operational capacity of 3.5 million TEU. The port is Europe's largest logistics park with 2,700 metres of quayside, offering the latest technology and infrastructure for shipping lines, including the ultra large container ships which can carry up to 18,000 containers.
David Hertzell, law commissioner for commercial and common law, is to become the new independent chair of the Chartered Insurance Institute’s professional standards board, succeeding David McIntosh QC, who will complete his tenure at the end of this year. Hertzell was appointed a law commissioner in 2007. Before joining the Law Commission he was managing partner at Davies Arnold Cooper Solicitors, where he began his legal career in 1981.
After months of wrangling, European politicians have finally struck a deal on Solvency II that will pave the way to completing one of the most challenging pieces of legislation to hit the insurance sector in Europe. “The EU’s failure to implement Solvency II in accordance with its original timetable had left many insurers all dressed up at huge expense, with nowhere to go in attempting to comply with the rules," said Jeremy Irving, partner and insurance expert at global law firm Eversheds.
That's what the analysts are saying. Global research firm Ovum says that although cutting expenditure and complying with regulations will continue to be vital, retail banks will be focused on revenue enhancement. The prioritisation of revenue growth they say will mean a refocus on customer experience management and further investment in customer-facing business processes. The endgame "an improvement both in the efficiency of client interaction and in customer satisfaction".
A major cyber security exercise kicks off today among the UK's major financial services providers. Monitored by the Bank of England, the Treasury and the Financial Conduct Authority, each of the major banks are expected to test their ability to withstand a cyber attack. Cyber attack has become one of the key threats to the banking system, with daily reports of such incidents, and many more going undetected or unreported.
Commenting ahead of the cyber exercise carried out by financial firms today, KPMG is warning that companies need to defend against increasingly sophisticated cyber warfare. “The world’s largest companies have been targeted over recent months by increasingly sophisticated hackers,” explains Stephen Bonner, a partner in KPMG’s Information Protection & Business Resilience team. “It is now not just a lone hacker sitting in their bedroom but, in many cases, serious organisations backed by the resources of nation states who are leading the charge.”
In the three days since Super Typhoon Haiyan roared through the central Philippines, the scale of the devastation revealed in its wake continues to escalate. According to catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide, preliminary analyses suggest that Haiyan (or Yolanda in the Philippines) may have been the strongest storm to make landfall anywhere in the world in recorded history. China has issued a typhoon alert for Hainan Island and the provinces of Guangdong and Guangxi.
C-level execs need to clearly define accountability and ownership of business continuity services within an organisation or risk placing their business in a very exposed position, states Paul Gant, head of business continuity managed solutions, at Phoenix. Historically the attitude from organisations towards business continuity has been met with a fail and fix mentality, however, events have forced C-level execs to demand action to ensure their business remains safe and operational.
With Internet governance and surveillance the hot topic of the moment, questions should be asked about the rationale behind how and why authoritarian – and democratic – governments control the information their citizens can access online. This is the view of Stephen Bonner, a partner in KPMG’s Information Protection & Business Resilience team. Commenting on the lack of adequate governance surrounding cyber activities and control of the Internet moving into the hands of national governments.
Losses arising from Windstorm Christian (known as St. Jude in the UK) will range between E1.5bn and E2.3bn, with the majority of insured losses occurring in Denmark and Germany. Significant insured losses also occurred in the Netherlands, France, UK, and Sweden. Windstorm Christian smashed into southern Britain on 28th October, knocking down trees, flooding lowlands, and disrupting travel over land, sea, and air. Gusts of 160 km/h (100 mph) were reported on the Isle of Wight in southern England.
Preliminary details coming out of the Philippines indicate that substantial damage has occurred in multiple provinces throughout the Visayas region. The system is expected to maintain super typhoon strength for the next 12 hours, despite the slow weakening trend. After 24 hours, a faster decrease in intensity is expected due to further degrading environmental factors including the arrival of cooler sea surface temperatures in the western South China Sea and increased land interaction as the system approaches the central coast of Vietnam.
xMatters has appointed Laura Meadows as head of business continuity solutions, EMEA. In this newly created role, Meadows will be responsible for delivery of xMatters’ business continuity planning, sales, solutions development and marketing strategies in the region.
Legal expenses insurer DAS has launched its Loss Assistant Business product and Commercial Legal Protection products on Acturis.
Less than 40% of organisations are testing and updating their plans annually. This is according to research by IT and work area recovery provider, Phoenix, which believes there may be a perception that business continuity management is a complex, costly and time-consuming process to maintain. To address these inhibitors, the provider has developed an end-to-end managed service designed to meet the entire business continuity process from BIA and plan creation to annual rehearsals and plan maintenance.
AIG has enhanced its cyber insurance offering. Impending EU legislation has increased potential fines to five per cent of annual global turnover if companies are found to be in breach of rules set out under a new framework put forward in 2012 by Viviane Reding, vice-president of the European Commission.
The winners of the fourth annual Risk Management Awards will be announced in less three weeks' time at the glittering Awards Gala Dinner and Ceremony. Last year's awards were attended by hundreds of industry professionals and we look forward to welcoming the biggest names in the industry again this year. View the 2013 finalists here.
Skills shortages in general insurance businesses have dropped significantly over the past 12 months, according to the Chartered Insurance Institute’s latest Skills Survey. Despite this improvement, over half of employers continue to suffer from a dearth in technical skills and this issue will be exacerbated if there is a squeeze on available talent as the global economy improves.
Specialist insurer Markel International has launched a new liability product designed to meet the specific needs of the rapidly growing UK biomedical and life sciences sector. The sector, which is well established in the UK, is expected to see strong growth, with £5bn being invested annually in pharmaceutical research and development alone.
Lockton has announced the appointment of Tony Saada, as chief executive officer of its MENA division. Saada will be responsible for developing and serving Lockton's client base in the Middle East and North Africa region. Prior to his appointment, Saada spent 27 years at Marsh, most recently as senior executive officer of Bowring Marsh in Dubai.
New research from Maplecroft has revealed that 31% of global economic output will be based in countries facing ‘high’ or ‘extreme risks’ from the impacts of climate change by the year 2025 – a 50% increase on current levels and more than double since the company began researching the issue in 2008.
The world's urban population is forecast to grow by about 1.4 billion to 5 billion between 2011 and 2030, with 90% of the increase coming in the emerging markets. Swiss Re's latest sigma study Urbanisation in emerging markets: boon and bane for insurers reviews the rapid growth of towns and cities in emerging markets.
Impact Forecasting has launched its first tool to understand the financial impact of riots by developing an analysis of the threat within Indonesia. The need to fully understand the political dynamics of Indonesia has become significantly more important in recent years as Indonesia continues to develop into one of the world’s leading economic powers.
Windstorm Christian smashed into southern Britain Monday knocking over trees, flooding lowlands, and disrupting land, sea, and air travel. Also known as St. Jude, Carmen, and Simone by local weather agencies in other countries, the storm was one of the strongest extratropical cyclones to hit the UK in a decade. Gusts of 160 km/h (100 mph) were reported on the Isle of Wight in southern England, and waves greater than 7.5 meters (25 feet) were reported elsewhere along the coast.
The expiration of TRIA would result in a decrease of affordable terrorism coverage or, even its elimination. This is according to RIMS, whose report August report Terrorism Risk Insurance Act: The Commercial Consumer’s Perspective has been followed up by a survey of its global membership of risk professionals.
Aon Risk Solutions has launched its new product, Weather Protect, designed to provide cover against the impact of adverse weather conditions. With the increasing unpredictability of the UK weather in recent years, businesses are seeking a viable means of managing their exposure to weather risks from crop growers to retailers; airlines to construction companies. The global weather climate continues to be a volatile external factor which influences both consumer behavior and market dynamics.
As severe weather warnings continue across the UK, organisational productivity is likely to suffer as employees struggle to gain access to key business applications beyond email. This is according to global industry analysts at Ovum, who believe that CIOs that embrace the need for mobile enterprise apps and cloud productivity apps will maintain productivity in the face of disaster, such as the arrival in the UK today of a severe storm, dubbed 'St Jude'.
Airmic has published a guide to warranties to help increase the level of certainty around insurance efficacy. The document, produced with the assistance of law firm Herbert Smith Freehills, provides an explanation of how warranties work and includes two sample clauses that may modify the effect of a breach of warranty.
Specialist lines underwriting agency, CFC today announced the launch of Biosurance PH. This new addition to its suite of insurance solutions for the life science industry tackles the unique set of risks faced by pharmaceutical companies, from drug designers and licence holders to manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers.
David Cloake has been appointed chief executive officer. Currently COO, Cloake has been with CR since November 2012, after leaving Kent County Council as head of emergency planning. He is also a former head of emergency planning at the London Borough of Southwark, and he sits on the board of the Emergency Planning Society as finance director.
A new questionnaire for the submission of professional lines business has been published by the International Underwriting Association. The document has been drawn up in response to concerns among underwriters that the level of data received for pricing reinsurance treaties has deteriorated in recent years. It aims to encourage better transmission of information between insurers and reinsurers.
SunGard Availability Services has announced two key management changes. Keith Tilley will assume the role of executive vice-president, EMEA & APAC and John Stevenson has been appointed to the newly created role of chief operating officer for Europe. Tilley will now be responsible for overseeing more than 3,000 customers across the regions.
Most property owners and developers do not have a current fire insurance valuation of their property assets. This means many are under-insured and risk substantial losses should they need to make an insurance claim. This was the key finding of a survey held by Lockton’s Real Estate and Construction team at seminar attended by around 100 property professionals on 16 October.
Two thirds (65%) of professional services businesses were affected by fraud in the last 12 months, according to new figures from the 2013 Kroll Global Fraud Report released today. Professional services companies are significantly less likely on average to invest in any of the 10 anti-fraud strategies covered in the survey. Yet in terms of financial damage from fraud, professional services firms face losing 1.4% of their revenue on average, suggesting that the types of fraud that do occur tend to be more expensive.
European insurers that slow their enterprise risk management improvement efforts because of the delay in the start date of the Solvency II Directive could adversely affect our assessment of their ERM, according to Standard & Poor's. "Solvency II remains a major driver of ERM improvements in Europe," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Miroslav Petkov. "In our view, the directive has firmed up insurers' approaches to risk appetite, risk governance, and risk reporting, along with their application of internal models..."
Following the release of the preparatory guidelines by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) last month, the PRA has today issued a consultation paper setting out its expectations of firms. Janine Hawes, insurance director at KPMG, commented: “One of the key concerns has been how the PRA will effect these guidelines. The proposals today include no suggestion that the PRA will apply additional requirements above the guidelines or make any rulebook changes, both of which will be welcomed by industry.
The majority of risk managers say poor communications are to blame when claims go wrong. Many of them put this down to the numerous links in the chain between the insured and the underwriter so that, when the different parties fail to talk to one another, the contact with the customer is lost.
As British businesses increasingly seek growth opportunities in politically volatile regions of the world, Beazley has moved to make its market leading political violence cover, developed at Lloyd’s, available across the UK. The cover provides businesses with a tool to mitigate and manage the risks arising from political upheaval that can adversely affect a company’s assets – whether overseas investments or trading operations.
American International Group has launched a web-based service to help companies estimate the cost of recall incidents, and expanded its available accidental contamination coverage limits to US$35m. This free, confidential service is available in six languages to qualified food and beverage manufacturers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland.
October 2013 has been remarkably active for typhoon activity in the West Pacific. In this month alone the region has so far seen the formation of six tropical storms, four of which have reached typhoon status (Typhoons Fitow, Danas, Nari and Wipha). Typically in the West Pacific, October will produce an average of just four named storms. For far, 2013 has produced 25 named storms to date, with more than two months still to go.
Despite the widespread mayhem caused by the recent horsemeat scandal, nearly three quarters (74%) of food processing firms say that it has had no direct impact on their businesses, cashflow or sales. But while business confidence remains comparatively high, the seemingly benign conditions are not expected to last: 58% believe that trading conditions will get tougher over the next 12 months, more businesses will fail, and cash will become even harder to collect.
Ninety nine per cent of risk management and insurance professionals believe that diversity is important to future business success, according to research carried out by ACE at the FERMA Forum. Some 87% believe that diversity within the sector has improved over the last five years, with more young people, more flexible corporate cultures that encourage diversity and role models from different cultures as the most visible examples of change.
The increasing ease of raising intelligent capital could lead to the end of the established insurance cycle according to Toby Esser, Group CEO of Cooper Gay Swett & Crawford. Speaking at today’s BrokersLink Global Conference in Singapore, Esser told delegates that in the future the market should only expect to see country specific short-term rate hardening following catastrophes, as previously experienced in Chile, Japan and Thailand, rather than cyclical changes to the overall market.
Enterprises that rely on most traditional approaches to cybersecurity are unlikely to succeed against the next generation of advanced persistent threat (APT) attacks, according to global IT association ISACA. Traditional defenses such as firewalls and anti-malware are not up to the challenge of today’s APTs, the association says, and to counter the threat, organisations must add new skills, processes and technology to their cybersecurity arsenal.
QBE has collaborated with the Association of British Insurers to establish the Rehabilitation Panel for Insurers, a group where general, life and health insurers can unite to focus on rehabilitation issues that are a priority for the industry and across product lines. The panel, chaired by QBE's Rosie Hewitt, includes representatives from Allianz, Aviva, Axa, Covea, Direct Line, HSBC, Lloyds Banking, LV, MIB, NFU, Saga, Swiss Re, Unum, and Zurich.
Strong competition and low consumer demand are the two most significant risks facing SMEs today, a survey by Zurich has found. Still, despite these challenges, SMEs are striving for growth by targeting new customer segments via traditional and new sales channels, even expanding to foreign markets. Attracting new customers is considered vital with most of the SMEs targeting them in domestic and international markets in the last 12 months. They also see attracting new customers as the biggest growth opportunity.
ACE Group has announced the appointment of Nicolas Givelet as risk engineer in its Continental Europe environmental insurance team. In this newly-created role, Givelet will lead a new environmental risk engineering taskforce for ACE in the region, assisting the pan-European underwriting and claims teams on technical matters.
FM Global has appointed Peter Solloway to its management team, following the retirement of Martin Fessey. Solloway will be based at FM Global’s Windsor office will be responsible for managing a team of business development executives in Northern and Central Europe, as well as in EMEA.
The 2013 Underwriting Performance and Reputation report, in its tenth year, sets out to determine which are the best-known underwriting businesses by a number of different criteria. Following several years of relatively stable awareness in which Lloyd’s players dominated, the 2013 study shows a major change with companies market players’ awareness collectively increasing by over 40%.
Research from PwC has found a significant year on year increase in UK insurance M&A deals value during the first six months of 2013, despite a fall in deals volume. M&A deals value increased by over 350% to €1.5bn in the first half of 2013 from €344.6m in the first half of 2012, while number of deals fell by 34% from 32 in the first of half of 2012 to 21 in the first half of 2013.
AIG Europe has launched a new service aimed at helping companies resume normal operations quickly following a pollution or environmental incident, whilst minimising remediation and liability costs. The AIG PIER network is available in 32 countries across Europe and can mobilise local specialised consultants and contractors to support businesses develop remediation plans, mitigate damage, manage public impact of the incident and begin the clean-up.
Legal and contractual issues are the most pressing areas of concern to merchant shipowners, the latest member survey conducted by the UK P&I Club has revealed. After contractual issues, the next greatest areas of concern were piracy, crime and international sanctions, reflecting the issues shipowners are facing, particularly in the waters around Africa.
European Commissioner Michel Barnier has put forward a draft Directive which postpones the Solvency II start date to 1 January 2016. Commenting on the delay, Paul Clarke, partner and global insurance regulatory leader, said: "The current directive had a start date of January 2014, which became unrealistic given the slow progress on Omnibus 2. "It was widely known that a 'Quick Fix 2' was required to move the date from 2014, and there was concern in the market that a safe date that avoids the need for a 'Quick Fix 3' would have been in the distant future.
Richard Baldwin has joined PwC‘s enterprise resilience team, whose responsibilities include helping clients to prepare for, respond to and deal with company crises. Baldwin is well known in the industry as the founder of one of the UK's most successful crisis management consultancies, Link Associates. He has been involved in the development of crisis and emergency response structures for large international companies across a variety of high risk industries for the last 27 years.
The speed at which political instability spreads is now inextricably linked to social media, as disaffected populations globally are increasingly turning to this powerful outlet to drive political demonstrations. This, according to Marsh, means that the ‘rear view mirror’ approach to risk management, which is frequently used by multinationals to forecast risk by examining past events, is no longer sufficient when operating in at-risk countries.
The revised BS ISO/IEC 27001:2013 and BS ISO/IEC 27002:2013 standards have been published. The standards which help businesses manage information security were first conceived at BSI, the business standards company, in the shape of BS 7799. The 2013 revision of the international standard will enable businesses of all sizes and sectors to accommodate the swift evolution and increased complexity of managing information and the continual challenge that cyber security poses.
A majority of drivers in the six largest motor insurance markets in Europe have indicated they are willing to embrace telematics-based products in consumer research carried out by Towers Watson. Interest is highest in Italy and Spain, where around 70% of drivers in each country said they were definitely or probably interested in taking out a telematics policy. Across all six participating European countries, 55% of drivers indicated some interest in telematics insurance.
EIOPA) has recently published its final guidelines for the preparation of Solvency II, in response to the public consultation earlier in the year. “The release of these guidelines represents a significant step in the journey towards Solvency II implementation," commented PwC's Charles Garnsworthy. "EIOPA expects of them but, in the UK, will be looking for further clarity from the PRA about how they intend to adopt these guidelines.
Human influence on the climate system is clear, and is evident in most regions of the globe, according to a new report from the IPPC, which maintains that human influence has been the dominant cause of observed warming since the mid-20th century. The evidence for this has grown, thanks to more and better observations, an improved understanding of the climate system response and improved climate models.
Premium income written in the London company market reached nearly £18bn in 2012, according to the IUA. In addition, business worth a further £6.23bn has been identified as written in other locations, but controlled and managed by London company operations. The IUA's report also examines business by placement type and, for the first time, provides a breakdown of how income is divided between direct and facultative business, as well as treaty contracts.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has fined Clydesdale Bank for failing to inform its customers clearly of their rights after the bank miscalculated the repayments on over 42,500 mortgages. Clydesdale, which is owned by National Australia Bank, has agreed to compensate all those who underpaid on their mortgages as a result and write to other affected customers. This process has been agreed with the FCA.
Financial services institutions must gain a better understanding of the mobile payments market, according to Ovum. The research highlights that without a clear understanding of the relationship between mobile payments and the existing payments infrastructure, industry players will significantly miss out on the long-term potential of the market.
A high number of casualties and widespread damage are expected following an M7.7 earthquake in southern Pakistan. AIR Worldwide reports put the epicentre of the quake at 43 miles (69km) north-northeast of Awaran in the province of Balochistan. The quake struck at a depth of 20km and was followed minutes later by a M5.9 aftershock.
A changed economic environment, a restructuring of traditional insurance roles and changing technologies are creating a “perfect storm”, resulting in a significant shift in culture in the complex insurance market. Such are the findings of a report carried out by Celent and commissioned by Agencyport Software, an annual study of the attitudes and aspirations of insurance industry executives.
Disaster recovery and building repairs group, Prism Network, has secured a £2m investment package, after its first three years of trading. The investment, from Venture Capitalist Midven and ABN AMRO Commercial Finance, will allow Prism to recruit, including a further team of broker account managers and expand its Midlands headquarters, as well as increase its network of contractors around the country.
At least 68 people have been killed and scores more injured during a protracted and ongoing assault by militants at a shopping centre in Kenya's capital, Nairobi. Between 10 and 15 militants are said to have entered Westgate, an upmarket shopping complex in the city's Westlands area on Saturday morning. The assailants, armed with automatic rifles and explosives, opened fire on security guards and civilians. The assailants are believed to have taken numerous hostages, and efforts to end the assault are ongoing.
A new report from Swiss Re provides a risk index comparing the human and economic exposure of 616 cities around the globe, aimed at promoting dialogue on urban resilience among decision-makers, the insurance industry and the broader public.
A new report has identified some of the key and emerging threats on the cyber risk landscape. The study, carried out by European Commission information security agency, ENISA, identifies an increase in threats to infrastructure through targeted attacks, mobile devices and social media identity thefts carried out in the cloud.
Leaving terrorism insurance to be written without a US government backstop is a gamble that would create economic uncertainty, the International Underwriting Association (IUA) has warned. Without a renewal of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), private provision of terrorism insurance may disappear entirely in some areas and would almost certainly be much more expensive than it is today.
Eight men have been arrested by the Metropolitan Police's Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) in connection with a £1.3 million theft by a gang who stole the money by taking control of a Barclays Bank branch computer system. The arrests are the result of a long term intelligence led operation by the Metropolitan Police's PeCU, in partnership with Barclays Bank, who have been investigating the theft of £1.3m from the Swiss Cottage branch of Barclays in April 2013.
A new report from PwC looking at the future of insurance M&A has found that the strategic importance of M&A to insurers across the globe is set to increase. Experts believe that European insurers could slice two to three per cent off their combined ratios by emulating pricing best practice from markets such as the US or Australia. PwC reckons that transaction volumes won’t recover along the same lines as during the last decade and instead, the next few years will see a ‘quiet revolution’ in global insurance M&A.
Arthur J. Gallagher has announced the acquisition of passenger transport specialist Belmont International, an independent insurance broker in the South East, for an undisclosed sum. Established in 1988 by managing director Barrie Etchells to service the newly privatised UK bus industry, Belmont has since grown to be one of the top commercial insurance brokers in the South East, with more than 80 employees generating more than £55m gross written premium.
Travelers has appointed David Watts as head of general aviation for Travelers Syndicate Management Limited (Syndicate 5000 at Lloyd’s). Watts most recently worked at Catlin Canada, where he held the role of director, underwriting.
New research from specialist recruiter, Robert Walters, indicates that the number of adverts for jobs in the UK insurance sector increased between the first and second quarters. According to research, changes in overall vacancy levels show a national rise of 16% in available roles across this period. Demand for insurance professionals was most notable in the North West and North East of the country, with employers across the region contributing to a huge quarterly rise of 46% in advertised vacancies.
Mobile alert tests are being carried out in Glasgow, Suffolk and Yorkshire to make sure the public can receive information in an emergency. A series of tests will take place in selected locations throughout the country this autumn, Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude announced today. Three tests in specific parts of Yorkshire, Suffolk and Glasgow are intended to test how various alerting technologies work and the public’s reaction to them.
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has launched a new cyber risk product aimed at SMEs and corporates. Allianz Cyber Protect aims to offer a comprehensive suite of three insurance products to address various first and third party liability issues that can arise from a serious cyber attack or data breach. Key elements of Allianz Cyber Protect include cover up to a limit of €50m and covering a broad range of cyber exposures; three levels of business interruption cover and immediate access to a crisis response team.
Deloitte has announced the appointment of John Tesh CBE as senior advisor to its audit advisory group. Tesh is a former deputy director and head of the capabilities team in the Civil Contingencies Secretariat (CCS) in the UK Cabinet Office. From 2006 to 2012, he was programme director for the Government’s National Resilience Capabilities Programme. Tesh was responsible for developing the UK’s National Risk Assessment and pioneered work on risk communication in the first National Risk Register.
Almost three quarters of brokers place business in specialist niches, such as charity, heritage or education, according to a new report by Ecclesiastical, whose Specialist Broker Barometer indicates that 72% of brokers in the UK place business in specialist areas. The barometer, undertaken by 250 brokers across the UK however also indicated that just under a third of brokers (29%) actually class themselves as specialist brokers.
BAE Systems Detica has launched a military-grade solution designed to protect the industrial control systems of organisations such as power plants, oil refineries or automated manufacturing plants from cyber attack. The major applications for the IndustrialProtect solution will be organisations within the defence, energy, utilities and natural resources sectors, where industrial control systems are integral to their efficiency, growth and productivity.
As global insurance markets recover, insurers are moving from a cost-cutting stance to investment in strategic IT projects. According to recent research by Ovum, overall global insurance IT budgets will grow at a 6.5% compound annual growth rate, with total IT spend reaching US$109bn by 2017. Insurers are prioritising investment that will drive customer acquisition and retention and improve operational effectiveness.
While weather-related losses remain comparatively rare in the global power generation sector, research published today by Marsh highlights that their financial impact is considerably higher than other operational loss events. According to Marsh, the majority of operational power generation losses are attributed to either one or a combination of issues relating to location, technology and maintenance. These losses total more than US$1.8bn, which includes both settled losses and reserves for losses that remain ongoing.
Two ethical guides to help employers articulate, incentivise and demonstrate ethical culture in the workplace have been launched today by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII). The CII’s Ethical culture: building a culture of integrity and Ethical culture: a practical guide for small firms, are intended to provide a helping hand to all firms, but especially SMEs, who typically have less resource to deal with these issues.
Continuing uncertainty surrounding the application of cyber exclusion clauses in policy wordings by insurers is eroding the value of insurance and causing mounting concern among global energy firms, according to Marsh. The inclusion of so-called “CL380 clauses”, which are currently imposed across a broad range of energy insurance policies, mean that insurers may deny energy firms’ claims for physical loss or damage stemming from cyber-related incidents.
Solvency II’s second pillar requires the captive board to demonstrate robust governance and risk management. Around a quarter of single-owner captives are domiciled in either the European Union or in Bermuda, which has recently opted for a modified version of Solvency II. These captives are directly affected by the implications of Solvency II and will have to take notice of their requirements sooner or later.
Impact Forecasting’s August nat cat report reveals billion-dollar flood losses recorded in China, Russia, Philippines, and Pakistan during August, caused an initial combined estimate of US$10bn in economic losses. Persistent rainfall caused flooding across much of China during the month of August, with Heilongjiang Province sustaining much of the damage. According to available data from the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA), nationwide totals during August showed that more than 260 people died, at least 306,000 homes and structures were damaged, and the aggregate economic loss was at least CNY32bn(US$5.3bn).
After a two month wait, the next indicative date for the key European Parliament plenary meeting to consider, and hopefully approve, Omnibus 2 was released this morning. As KPMG had anticipated, this has been pushed back beyond the end of the year, and is now scheduled for 11 March 2014. KPMG has urged politicians to move forward quickly with a second directive.
Toshiba Medical Systems has selected PageOne's Responder smartphone-based messaging service to locate and manage the call-out and lone-worker safety of its field-based engineers. The solution is assisting Toshiba Medical System in day-to-day operations as well as helping demonstrate compliance with the ISO 18001 accreditation for Occupational Health and Safety Management, and the Working Time Directive.
The Unite union has today confirmed that there has been no contravention of the blacklisting regulations on the Crossrail contracts being undertaken by BFK JV (Bam, Ferrovial, Kier) with Unite agreeing that no blacklisting has taken place. Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail chief executive said: “By their own admission, Unite advised the Scottish Affairs Committee that their evidence was circumstantial and was not sufficient to prove blacklisting...."
BIBA has strongly rejected comments made by The Law Society about solicitors professional indemnity cover, describing them as ‘ill-informed’ and ‘self-promoting’. BIBA chief executive, Steve White, said: “The Law Society has complained about lack of capacity and price for small law firms’ PI cover; however, the cause of this has been a consistently high number of errors and omissions claims made by small firms."
Aon Global Risk Consulting has appointed Robert Robinson to lead its global energy risk engineering team. Based in London, he will lead a team of consultants across the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific. Replacing Gordon Martin who is retiring from Aon, Robinson was formerly a managing director at Marsh Energy.
AIG has announced the availability of its new Launch plus 10 coverage, designed to protect satellite owners and operators for the launch plus the first 10 years of satellite in-orbit operation. The UK underwriting team at AIG Europe will be offering Launch plus 10 to complement the existing space products and services which AIG already offers. AIG Europe Limited has appointed Sciemus Space as a consultant.
Organisations that fail to embrace disaster recovery solutions and business continuity planning are wasting money and run the risk of jeopardising their future says Phoenix's Mike Osborne, further to a recent report putting economic losses from disasters at US$56bn for the first six months 2013. And while the report says global insurers covered up to US$20bn, this still leaves a US$36bn hole.
Lockton has launched a dedicated website for solicitors, providing a single platform where solicitors can explore the services and products relevant to their business needs. Following this year’s professional indemnity renewal on 1st October, clients will be able to log in to a secure portal to access and manage their insurances online. Users will be able to gain CPD points on the site, which offers a set of online video seminars and online training modules.
More than 400 international insurance-related patents were filed last year, in a sign that the insurance sector is focusing on innovation in a bid to add value to its offerings, according to RPC. Their research says there were 435 such patents filed during 2012 for innovations as diverse as healthcare insurance which allows for the use of stem cells in future treatments and methods for valuing insurance cover for hydrocarbon reserves.
Impact Forecasting has launched a new flood scenario-based model for Mexico to quantify financial losses caused by river flooding. Flooding in Mexico over the last two decades has caused human and financial losses across the entire country, with severe events in 1993, 1998, 1999, 2005, 2007 or 2010. As such, flood in Mexico is considered to be one of the most significant natural perils, alongside earthquake and hurricane.
As part of a number of new coverage initiatives planned by Ascent to develop during 2013 to enhance its niche product portfolio, the underwriter has launched a general liability coverage extension for small and mid-market business clients.
A computer glitch at Goldman Sachs could cost the investment bank US$100m or more after it inadvertently made a large number of erroneous options trades on Tuesday that disrupted trading across multiple US exchanges.
Political tensions are expected to escalate following the arrest of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammad Badie in Cairo yesterday, as the development serves to further polarise the country's major political blocs. Badie joins a number of other senior Islamist personalities in detention, including former Islamist president, Mohammed Mursi, and MB deputy leader, Khairat el-Shater.
According to preliminary sigma estimates, total economic losses from natural catastrophes and man-made disasters were US$56bn in the first half of 2013. The global insurance industry covered US$20bn of the total losses, of which US$17bn were caused by natural catastrophes, in large part due to widespread flood events. In the first half of 2013, disasters claimed 7,000 lives.
Congratulations to all of this year's Risk Management Awards finalists. The winners will be announced at a gala dinner and ceremony on 20 November 2013 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London. Last year's awards were attended by hundreds of industry professionals and we look forward to welcoming the biggest names in the industry again this year.
Phoenix has announced that it has been selected by Hewlett-Packard to be one of its Converged Infrastructure Partners in the UK. HP Converged Systems is a portfolio of system-based products from HP that combine IT components: servers, storage, networking, software and services for specific workloads.
A new equality strategy has been approved by the Board of the Chartered Insurance Institute as part of CII’s commitment to strive towards creating a diversity-aware and inclusive professional body for those working in insurance and financial services. The CII Board decided to introduce a Single Equality Scheme which aligns with the public sector equality duty, following its introduction in 2011 as part of the Equality Act 2010.
Markel International has launched a privacy, data breach and electronic risks module for professional services firms in the UK. The cover protects businesses against a wide range of cyber risks and includes third party liability and first party costs arising from a data breach, unauthorised IT systems access, and electronic media injury.
The recent delivery of a suspicious package to an address in London has prompted the Met to issue current guidance on the safe handling of mail and the initial response when recipients have concerns regarding potential contamination. This is particularly relevant for organisations connected with the DWP's mandatory work activity placement scheme who may be the recipients of unsolicited packages sent as part of a campaign of protest against the scheme.
The Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) has claimed yet another victim, this time the Washington Post, CNN and Time websites. But, in this case the group went one step further and manipulated the links that appeared on the media groups’ own webpages.
Over recent months, the SEA has also hacked into the BBC, Al-Jazeera, The Guardian and the Financial Times’ social media platforms. Each hack brings into question the security of passwords.
Management system certifier and training body, LRQA will be holding a series of one-day briefings on the forthcoming changes to the information security management system standard, ISO 27001. The standard has undergone a major revision to ensure that it remains relevant to today’s information security needs. The final draft of the new standard was finalised in May and it is expected to be published in October 2013.
Aon Risk Solutions has extended its arrangement with QBE Europe for solicitors professional indemnity to include one to three partner firms. This follows the recent announcement by XL that it intends to “significantly reduce” its market share in the solicitors professional indemnity market.
Two scemes that provide access to industry expertise to respond effectively to the consequences of cyber security attacks have been formally launched by CESG, the Information Security arm of GCHQ, and the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI), in collaboration with the Council of Registered Ethical Security Testers (CREST), the professional body representing the technical security industry.
ISACA has issued new guidance outlining critical governance and assurance considerations for big data. Managed properly, big data can improve decision making, reduce time to market and increase profits. But it can also raise significant risk, ranging from disastrous data breaches to privacy and compliance concerns. According to Privacy and Big Data, enterprises must ask and answer a series of important questions, which if ignored expose the enterprise to greater risk and damage.
Xchanging’s global accounting and net settlement product, Netsett, has been awarded ACORD certification. Trevor Maddison, director at ACORD commented “ACORD’s vision is for an insurance industry that embraces a global view of information, and allows all trading partners to be able to easily exchange information to agreed standards.
Almost a third of UK firms have reported a spike in absence rates during the recent hot weather. This is according to a PMI Health Group, whose research suggests that 30 per cent of firms have seen more staff call in sick since the start of summer. The study also found 71% of firms find it easier to engage employees in well-being schemes during the summer months.
According to catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide, Typhoon Utor slammed into the northern Philippine island of Luzon on 12th August, at around 15:00 local time with 10-minute sustained winds of 175 km/h (109 mph, gusts of up to 210 km/h (130 mph), and waves up to 2.5 metres. Currently off the northwestern coast of Luzon, the typhoon is moving west-northwest at about 22 km/h across the central part of the South China Sea, in the general direction of China's Guangdong province.
Hand arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) could be costing Britain almost £5bn.
The economic cost of HAVS is based on the HSE's costs to Britain of workplace injuries and work-related ill health for 2010/11, which which report, the total cost to society per case of ill health (of which HAVS is one) is £16,400. Given that there are around 300,000 employees who are estimated to have advanced symptoms of HAVS, health and safety consultants at Reactec estimate the total cost to society of HAVS at around £4.9bn.
Xchanging has won a contract to provide Standard Bank with financial processing services. Xchanging will provide the African financial services group with reconciliation, payment processing, origination, and data and document management, initially for one year.
The Serious Fraud Office has admitted to the loss of over 30,000 documents and other media relating to its now closed investigation into BAE Systems.The agency said in a statement that it has a duty to return any requested material following the close of an investigation, and that in this instance the party requesting the return was “sent additional material which had in fact been obtained from other sources”. An embarrassment to the UK's white collar crime agency, this instance of data loss currently looks to affect some 59 sources.
The Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) has been asked to join a new government committee monitoring the security of UK ports and harbours. Neil Smith, the LMA’s head of underwriting, attended the inaugural meeting of the Department for Transport’s National Maritime Security Committee, which overseas security arrangements for UK flag vessels as well as the country’s ports and harbours.
Cross-industry fraud investigations are being hindered by companies misusing the Data Protection Act to share data, according to the findings of the Chartered Insurance Institute’s New Generation Claims Group. Intercompany data requests in the insurance industry made under section 29(3) of the act – designed for the sharing of data to prevent and detect crime – are happening in unmanageably high volumes, are often “non-compliant” and are “adding little to counter fraud investigations”, the group says.
IT consultancy Northdoor has announced an exclusive partnership with 24 Lockdown, a security and technology consultancy service in the cyber risk arena. The partnership will focus on providing risk avoidance and security protection to the London insurance market, where insurance fraud alone is estimated to cost £2bn a year. Simon Teague, director of 24 Lockdown’s UK operations said ‘We are delighted to announce this enhanced partnership, where we are selling our services exclusively through Northdoor.
International SOS and Control Risks have unveiled the latest version of their travel security tool, TravelTracker. The technology has been designed to enable clients to quickly identify the location of their employees and communicate with them as needed, wherever they are in the world. The solution also offers a gateway to the services of International SOS and Control Risks. With organisations sending people to more risky destinations, the need to know employees’ locations and itineraries is vital.
A new London Market Political Risk Committee has been established by the IUA. The group is made up of underwriting and claims representatives from across the association’s member companies and will meet regularly to discuss issues affecting political risk business. The association has already hosted its first meeting and drawn up a list of future work items that includes considering financial guarantees, redenomination of currencies, international sanctions, licensing requirements and taxation.
Lloyd’s managing agents could see their legal costs reduced by Lord Jackson’s proposals to reform civil litigation and streamline the small claims process, according to the Lloyd’s Market Association. LMA underwriting manager David Powell said: “The Jackson reforms, and in particular the government’s decision to ban referral fees, are having a positive effect on tackling inflated legal costs. Restricting the money recovered from insurers by claimant lawyers is leading to fewer claims farmers."
Following a terrorist threat against US interests abroad, the US State Department has announced that several US embassies, which were closed in several countries on 4 August, will remain closed until 10 August. US authorities have also indicated that other corporate, strategic and/or symbolic infrastructure representing US interests in these countries may be at a heightened risk. The decision to close multiple diplomatic offices represents a significant development and indicates that there is credible and serious threat against US interests.
Impact Forecasting has launched the first catastrophe model for the East Africa region. The model quantifies the financial impact of earthquakes and in turn allows insurers and reinsurers to gain a better understanding of their exposures in this growing market. The region is prone to earthquakes as the rift system has two tectonic plates which are separating and diverging.
Cat modeller AIR Worldwide said today that the remnants of Tropical Storm Flossie are currently north-west of the most northern island in the Hawaiian chain of island, Kauai, and that the maximum sustained winds have dropped to below 30 MPH. Flossie had wind speeds of up to 50 MPH as it came within 20 miles of the most southern Big Island and then past Maui to become the first tropical storm to hit Hawaii since hurricane Iniki struck Kauai in 1992 causing considerable damage.
Cars are now a genuine target for cyber criminals and it is possible for attackers to gain control of a vehicle while it is in motion, with risky consequences. For instance, as Alex Fidgen, director at IT security company MWR InfoSecurity, explains, this could have serious consequences if the brakes were applied at high speed. This comment was made after Volkswagen allegedly sued the University of Birmingham to stop it from publishing how it had hacked anti-theft systems on luxury cars including Lamborghinis and Porsches.
AlienVault has announced the launch of its Open Threat Exchange (OTX) Reputation Monitor, a free service that AlienVault hopes will help enable security professionals to monitor and track their organisations reputation. After registering the IP address and domains they wish to monitor, users will receive notifications when a threat is detected, or anytime one of their IP addresses or domains is listed in a blacklist, hacker forum, or matches one of the IPs in AlienVault’s IP reputation database.
Beazley’s political risks team has extended its political violence policy to offer unambiguous cover for physical damage during terrorist or insurgency actions caused by the police or security forces. Chris Parker, head of terrorism and political violence underwriting, said: "There is a considerable lack of clarity at the moment about this issue. For example, during the hostage crisis committed by a recognised terrorist organisation in Algeria earlier in 2013, considerable damage was sustained by the plant which was caused by the Algerian Special Forces as they sought to resolve the situation.
MPs have said that the UK is losing the fight against cyber crime and that it must do more to keep up with the pace of cyber criminals to stop online fraud and deter state-sponsored cyber-espionage.
The country is "complacent" when it comes to cyber crime according to the group of MPs on the Home Affairs Select Committee. Further, low-level internet based financial crime has been falling into a black hole as so many incidents go unreported.
Specialist Lloyd's insurer Jubilee has announced that Eamon Brown will join the company as chief underwriting officer. Brown will be responsible for overall underwriting strategy within Jubilee's Lloyd's Syndicates 5820 and 779, and the delivery of targeted growth across the firm's five underwriting franchises including consumer products, life, property, casualty and political risk and terrorism.
Floods affect more people globally than any other type of disaster. The floods of May and June 2013 in Central and Eastern Europe turned out to be the worst in the region in more than a decade. A recent survey presented by Zurich has shown that while businesses are aware of the challenges they face, most have not yet developed a holistic approach to protect themselves from these risks. To help fill this gap, Zurich has launched a multi-year flood resilience programme to help strengthen the resilience of communities against floods.
Nine out of ten insurers across EMEA cite preparing for the implementation of Solvency II as a challenge for their business, with 31% citing the regulation as a major challenge. Almost half of EMEA insurers (49%) describe their approach to Solvency II as proactive. These findings come from a global insurance survey commissioned by State Street and conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
Professional insurance fraud is a growing problem, and the need for effective fraud detection is now an urgent priority, according to the latest research from Ovum. Although most insurers have invested in fraud technology to some degree in the past five years, the majority of this investment, while beneficial, has been piecemeal. With a current focus mainly on the claims phase, insurers must reassess their fraud strategy and how technology is currently being used to combat the growing threat.
Some factions of the global infrastructure investment community are still failing to consider the impact of climate change on their infrastructure assets, leaving major infrastructure developments exposed to the increased long-term physical risks created by changing environmental conditions. According to a report published today by Marsh, Sustainable Infrastructure – Weathering the Storms, the sustainability of infrastructure assets should be assessed at the project inception stage and throughout the asset’s lifecycle.
Global IT security association ISACA has revised its information systems audit and assurance standards. The IS Audit and Assurance Standards define mandatory requirements for information systems auditing and reporting. They inform management of the expectations regarding the work of practitioners and ensure that practitioners understand the minimum level of acceptable performance required to meet professional responsibilities. Professionals who hold a CISA certification must comply with these standards.
Tom Woolgrove was today elected 117th president of the global professional body. Woolgrove, Cert CII, managing director, Personal Lines Insurance, Direct Line Group, succeeds Amanda Blanc, ACII, chartered insurer, CEO, AXA Insurance Commercial Lines and Personal Intermediary. Ashwin Mistry, OBE, ACII, Chartered insurance broker, chairman and chief executive, Brokerbility, has also been elected as CII deputy president.
A new survey from IBM has revealed that a significant proportion of UK insurance companies are failing to capitalise on the customer data they hold or adequately capture it in the first place. The survey paints a picture of an industry that still predominantly works in traditional siloed environments and fails to integrate or analyse its Big Data. The survey, based on interviews with 50 senior IT decision makers at UK insurance companies – also found 64% with more than five separate database systems.
Sustainable and well regulated growth in the UK financial services sector could generate approximately 22,000 additional jobs in the UK insurance industry by 2020, according to a new PwC report launched today. Approximately 47,500 additional jobs could be created across the whole UK financial services sector, with up to 218,000 across the wider UK economy. PwC economists based their analysis on two scenarios designed to represent potential futures for the financial services sector and the wider economy.
Marsh has appointed Jane Barker as chairman of Marsh Ltd. Ms Barker, who has been a non-executive director of the company since 2010, will succeed Sir Peter Middleton. Ms Barker is CEO of Equitas, a position she has held for the past six years, having served as its Finance Director since 1995. Previously, she was COO of the London Stock Exchange. Prior to that, Ms Barker spent 14 years with Marsh, joining CT Bowring – later acquired by Marsh – in 1976, becoming managing director and international CFO in 1988.
FERMA has told the European Commission that any new insurance solutions for catastrophe risks should be market based and respect freedom of choice for company insurance buyers. FERMA has made this comment in its response to the European Commission green paper on natural and man-made disasters. FERMA stresses the importance of suitable risk pricing as a mechanism to promote a culture of risk management. It says that where the private market is mature and working well, a compulsory scheme is not desirable.
SOCA has issued a warning that its name and brand have been used by criminals attempting to defraud members of the public. Computer users find that their screens are locked, and at the same time they receive a message purporting to be from SOCA which states that their computer screen will only be unlocked if they pay a fine. In reality, the computer has been infected with malware, disseminated by cyber criminals for financial gain.
The average total cost of risk increased in 2012 – climbing five per cent in 2012 as opposed to its increase of only 1.7% in 2011. This is according to the newly released RIMS Benchmark Survey, and is largely the result of firming market conditions. “Rates are rising, but our research shows that improving rates attract new capacity, which makes it difficult to sustain the trend towards progressively higher rates,” said RIMS board director Michael D. Phillipus.
Technology executives worldwide believe that the United States is the country most likely to come up with the next ‘disruptive technology breakthrough’ that will have a global impact in the next four years, according to the latest Global Technology Innovation survey by advisory firm KPMG, which surveyed technology business leaders worldwide from start-ups, mid-sized to large enterprises, venture capital firms and angel investors in order to identify disruptive technologies, innovation trends, and the scope of change.
Salamanca Group has launched a cyber security division. A JV with Si Secureview creates the new division designed to assist companies in identifying, managing and responding to the ever increasing threat of hostile cyber attacks. Since 2005, the team has been involved in a number of high profile projects providing IT security architecture, stress-testing systems and a variety of other solutions for US government agencies, multinational corporations such as Pepsi and financial institutions including Citigroup.
UK businesses are putting plans for IT transformation at the top of their list in a bid to increase competitiveness and offer greater capacity for business growth. According to new research, after spending the last five years in a state of uncertainty, the majority of organisations are now looking to refresh their technology estates within the next 36 months, with 49% of respondents stating demands for flexible and mobile working policies are pushing the need for a change in IT requirements.
The Association of British Insurers has published a guide on employers’ liability insurance. The aim of the guide is to provide clarity to businesses on what they do and don’t need to do when obtaining EL cover. The guide explains the difference between employers’ liability and public liability insurance, the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and includes a simple to follow table addressing some common concerns around adherence to health and safety guidelines.
Zurich estimates losses of approximately US$140m related to floods in Central and Eastern Europe and approximately US$138m, for both Zurich North America and Farmers Re together, related to two severe tornadoes, which hit Oklahoma City Metropolitan Area in May this year.
The Information Commissioner’s Office has issued NHS Surrey with a penalty of £200,000 after more than 3,000 patient records were found on a second hand computer bought through an online auction site. The sensitive information was inadvertently left on the computer and sold by a data destruction company employed by NHS Surrey since March 2010 to wipe and destroy their old computer equipment. The company carried out the service for free, with an agreement that they could sell any salvageable materials after the hard drives had been securely destroyed.
The ABI’s report into the challenges facing the insurance industry today Identifying the Challenges of a Changing World, an analysis of the issues facing the UK insurance industry and society, and launches a debate on how insurers can play a key role in finding solutions to the issues that will shape our world in the 2020s and beyond. The report identifies seven over-arching trends most relevant to insurers, including the digital revolution and impact of the social media.
Terry Farr and James Gilmour, former brokers at RP Martin Holdings Limited, have been charged with offences of conspiracy to defraud in connection with the investigation by the Serious Fraud Office into the manipulation of
The introduction of the UK Bribery Act has been accompanied by a flurry of legal and commercial advice creating confusion amongst many small and medium-sized business enterprises as to their responsibilities and constraints under the Act and how it is being practically applied. In response, BSI and the City of London Police are running a series of joint training programmes.
According to new research by AIG, over one in four captains of industry surveyed have little or no knowledge of what is covered by directors and officers (D&O) risks, and nearly 70% only discuss it when they renew their policy. The findings suggest senior business leaders could focus more on the increasing levels of personal risk to which they are exposed.
Just days after the event, Aon Benfield’s Impact Forecasting cat modelling team has launched a scenario model for the recent Alberta floods in Canada. Steve Jakubowski, president of Impact Forecasting, said: “This scenario model illustrates the global scope of an open platform...where third party data can be used to quantify clients’ exposure in areas with no existing models available prior to the event."
A new report suggests that European firms are being overtaken by surging volumes of information and are exposed to unprecedented levels of risk.
Iron Mountain and PwC’s second Information Risk Maturity Index shows how European businesses have grown more aware of the threat posed by information risk, but also reveals that mid-sized firms are ill-equipped to navigate a complex information landscape defined by expanding volumes of information in multiple formats; a rising level of malicious threats; and a growing requirement to manage this vital business asset.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has launched a member consultation following their strategic review which concluded earlier in the year. The consultation focuses on proposed changes to BIBA’s governance structures, the make-up of the board and a new model for segmenting its membership.
A proposal to pool flood risk among UK insurers will remove uncertainty from this market by ensuring availability and increased pricing stability for customers while allowing insurers to balance exposure to high-risk properties, Fitch Ratings says. Risk pools of the type proposed by the UK government and the Association of British Insurers have been successfully adopted in many other European countries.
A new report published today suggests that more than nine in 10 chief financial officers and chief operating officers within UK financial services businesses find the regulatory regime challenging to manage. Only in Hong Kong do financial executives find regulatory change more taxing than in the UK.
Frederik Koencke has been appointed as the first EMEA managing director of the 16-strong crisis management group within Towers Watson. Koencke, who joins from the executive management team at Hamburg-based broker BDJ Versicherungsmakler, will initially focus on extending Towers Watson’s crisis management client relationships in Germany and across continental Europe
Heavy rainfall that caused flooding across Southern Alberta continues to challenge the area, particularly in Calgary, where the Bow and Elbow Rivers both overtopped their banks. Roads and bridges were washed away; notably, the Trans-Canada Highway was damaged by mudslides west of Calgary. At June 28, power has been restored to much of Calgary, and the Trans-Canada Highway has been repaired west of Calgary.
Reinsurers are taking robust defensive measures to maintain market positions recently eroded by new capital markets entrants, according to a report from Willis Re. Its 1st July renewals report, Supply Chases Demand, finds that despite the impact of the US$30bn Superstorm Sandy loss, the key battleground is in US property catastrophe where capital markets have been most active so far.
After five years at the company, current CEO of Bluefin, Stuart Reid has been appointed executive chairman of the business, as Mike Bruce, current managing director Mike Bruce takes on the role of CEO. Stuart Reid will devote increasing time to the development and execution of acquisition opportunities together with other large scale projects important to the growth of the business, including continued activity in the MGA space.
Catastrophe risk modelling firm AIR Worldwide has released its Pandemic Flu Model. Developed to capture the excess morbidity, mortality, and insurance losses caused by pandemic influenza, the model includes more than 18,000 simulated events, ranging in severity from mild to severe, that can start and spread anywhere globally and last from months to years.
ACE Group has announced plans to remove the basis of contract clause from UK wordings issued under the ACE European Group stamp for new and renewed business. This move follows a full review that has included feedback from its clients and from Airmic. Basis clauses are a long-standing historical mechanism designed to guarantee that all information provided to insurers, upon which underwriting decisions are made, are factually correct.
An official comment letter submitted by US risk management society RIMS, to and at the request of the US Department of the Treasury provided the Society’s perspective on the current state of the market for natural catastrophe insurance in the United States. The letter also suggests that a universally accepted definition of ‘'natural catastrophe” would be advantageous for consumers purchasing natural catastrophe coverage, as well as insurers.
The Federation of European Risk Management Associations (FERMA) has agreed a change to its bylaws so that it can accept individual and corporate members who have an interest in European risk management. Until now membership has been limited to national risk management associations in Europe.
Amlin has acquired coverage for US and Canadian earthquake perils of up to US$75m from Bermudian Tramline Re II, which in turn is placing a catastrophe bond for this amount into the capital markets. This transaction provides the Amlin Group with fully collateralised protection over a four year period from 1 July 2013 against claims arising from a single earthquake event in all US and Canadian states and provinces. The coverage attaches at US$325m.
International Underwriting Association (IUA) has elected Malcolm Newman as its new chairman. Newman is managing director of SCOR’s London Hub. He takes over from Stephen Riley, executive director at Global Aerospace, who has led the association for the past seven years.
Allianz Commercial has enhanced its Complete SME range of tailored business insurance for SMEs. In addition to developing its Complete Business, Complete Property Owner and Complete Flatowner products, Allianz Commercial also offers Complete Office, Complete Contractor and Complete Retailer products – each of which is available online via QuoteSME and iMarket, with telephone support from Allianz’s specialist SME underwriting team.
In some high-risk areas, ocean warming and climate change threaten the insurability of catastrophe risk. This is one of the conclusions of a research report issued today by think-tank, The Geneva Association. When thinking of global warming, most people think of the atmosphere, not of the oceans. But it is the oceans that are the principle conveyor of energy around our planet. Through being the main source of water to the atmosphere, the oceans largely determine our weather patterns and provide the energy for the development of extreme events.
QBE has launched an excess of loss product for aviation liabilities in the Middle East. The product covers general aviation, airlines, ancillary aviation support services and aerospace products with a capacity of up to US$250m for airlines and product risks and US$200m for general aviation.
Attenda been accredited with the new ISO 22301 International Standard for Business Continuity Management. The company has been working for the past twelve months to align its business to the ISO 22301 standard, carrying out detailed assessments of the organisation and technology elements and processes, including a number of scenario based exercises with its crisis management team.
National standards body, BSI, has created a new specification PAS 555 Cyber security risk – governance and management to assist in the management of exposure to cyber security risk. The cost of the worst breach of the year appears to have significantly increased from £35,000 to £65,000 for small businesses and from £450,000-£750,000 for large organisations.
Public disclosure of a company's social issues is positive, but by itself does not show that the risks are under control, FERMA has told the European Commission and the European Parliament. "The disclosure of environmental and social information can...be viewed in a positive way," said FERMA President Jorge Luzzi. "But it is disclosure plus good risk management that creates the conditions for transparency and sustainability. By itself, disclosure is not enough."
KPMG has concerns as to whether the recommendations from the long-term guarantees assessment impact study will be mutually satisfactory to all parties, and hence whether the insurance industry will be saved from further delays to the Solvency II timeline.
The annual London Risk Register, which was approved by the London Resilience Forum and which sets out our assessment of the likelihood and potential impact of a range of risks that may affect London, has been updated. The London Risk Register is designed to help emergency responders and communities have a common understanding of the risks facing the local community
European Union (EU) cybersecurity agency, ENISA has received a new regulation, granting it a seven year mandate with an expanded set of duties. “The new regulation is great news for ENISA and for cybersecurity in Europe,” said ENISA’s executive director, professor Udo Helmbrecht. “It means that ENISA now has the scope and authority to make an even bigger difference in protecting Europe’s cyberspace.
RSA has renewed a contract to provide motor insurance to Motability Operations. The new deal takes effect from 1st October 2013 for an initial five years. The deal will be on a quota share arrangement with RSA retaining 20% of the premium exposure, ceding the balance to a Motability Operations owned captive
As civil unrest continues in Turkey, Willis is highlighting potential gaps in insurance cover among the repercussions of the unrest. “Turkey is in the midst of the biggest anti-government street protests since the AKP took power more than a decade ago," says Willis' Andrew van den Born, "...any further political turmoil could put in jeopardy Turkey’s investment grade status and ultimately its ability to fund itself.”
AIG UK has today launched airside premises and contractors liability protection, offering clients limits of indemnity and up to US$50m of war and terrorism cover included as standard. Airports in the UK are seeing increasing passenger numbers and general air traffic resulting in increased demand for airside services.
A key milestone in the path to formal implementation of Solvency II, the EIOPA report on the findings and recommendations of the long-term guarantee assessment has been released. The European insurance industry has over E7 trillion assets under management and, in turn, is a significant funder of long term investment, so where the rules end up will have ramifications for the capital markets more broadly.
The worst European flood event in a decade extended into another week as the death toll rose to at least 23. The most significant damage was experienced in southern and northeastern Germany after the Elbe and Danube rivers (along with their tributaries) overflowed their banks. Elsewhere, floodwaters were receding in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Switzerland, Poland and Hungary. Also, severe flooding affected southern and eastern China, killing at least 15 people.
DAS has made a series of changes to its stand-alone commercial legal protection (CLP) product, including the removing the 51% prospects of success requirement from the employment and legal defence sections. There were 186,0000 employment tribunal cases in the year 2011 to 2012, and for many companies this is their single biggest concern, especially at a time when managing staff costs is critical.
Airmic delegates identified cyber crime and data privacy as the most concerning risk facing their business, according to research performed by ACE at Airmic this year. Environmental risk was rated a distant fourth place with only four per cent of attendees citing this as a top risk for their business.
Companies are finding it increasingly difficult to control their supply chains at a time when the cost of failure is higher than ever, according to Airmic. Case studies examined during the research included the grounding of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, Thailand floods, Nestlé's Kit Kat attacked by Greenpeace for using unsustainable supplies of palm oil, Mattel recall of millions of toys.
The possibility that claims will not be paid because of innocent non-disclosure of information when buying a policy is the top concern of corporate insurance buyers, according to a membership survey by Airmic. The list of ‘stay awake at night’ topics is dominated by claims-related issues, though product innovation and global compliance also feature highly.
In response to this week’s demonstrations running up to the G8 annual meeting, the Cross-sector Safety and Security Communications group (CSSC) has issued the following protective security points, which summarise guidance from a Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) publication on the same.
The way many companies report their risk management activity is opaque, lacking in detail and detached from overall corporate strategy, according to the risk management association Airmic and ICSA. The two organisations will urge the Financial Reporting Council to tighten up risk reporting when it updates the UK Corporate Governance Code later this year.
Airmic has produced a guide and model wording to raise awareness among its members and counteract the impact of basis clauses, which often lie buried in insurance contracts and can result in legitimate claims not being paid. Basis clauses have been criticised by the Law Commission and no longer apply in relation to consumer insurance.
A joint mission of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the WHO met last week n Riyadh to assess the situation due to a new coronavirus in the Kingdom. This virus – a new, emerging virus that is distantly related to the virus that caused SARS – was then been named the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).
Jeremy Pinchin has been appointed CEO for Hiscox Re. This appointment is the first step in a plan to merge Hiscox's reinsurance functions in London, Paris and Bermuda, into a single business unit. Pinchin joined Hiscox in 2005 as group claims director and became CEO of Hiscox Bermuda in August 2012. Prior to Hiscox, Pinchin trained as a lawyer and was a main board director of the global broker Sedgwick Group. He subsequently was responsible for co-ordinating the Lloyd's Market's response to the events of September 11 2001.
SunGard Availability Services has signed a five year contract with Serco Group that will see the business continuity and managed services provider take responsibility for Serco’s UK IT infrastructure and undertake a technology transformation. Serco will also be moving a portion of its current estate to a virtualised, managed hosted model, using dedicated SunGard-managed platforms.
Two thirds of workers don’t receive enough information when their companies go through change such as layoffs, increasing the risk of misconduct, a report finds. Unsurprisingly, the report cited reducing pay as the most risky form of change, tripling the risk of bullying, discrimination and alcohol/drug abuse.
Governments around the world can reduce the human and economic impact of natural catastrophes by cooperating more closely with insurers, according to a report published today by insurance economics think tank, The Geneva Association. The report, Insurers’ contributions to disaster reduction, a series of case studies, examines examples of existing collaboration between insurers and governments around the world on disaster risk for best practices and areas where cooperation can deliver more human and economic benefit.
Marsh and CS STARS are adding a natural catastrophe risk map to its NAT CAT Pack. Launched in 2011, the NAT CAT Pack suite of services includes access to NATHAN, Munich Re’s GeoSpatial Solutions’ natural hazards risks database. The NAT CAT Risk Map expands upon traditional risk management information systems and enables users to record their global risk exposures on a single interactive map.
Several large UK cedants are reducing their spending on facultative reinsurance, according to Vanessa Macdonald-Smith, team leader at facultative reinsurance broker, Faber Global.
Central Europe has been inundated during the past several weeks with heavy and relentless rain, which has resulted in some of the worst floods seen in the area in more than 70 years. The floods have reached record levels, particularly in Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic. Switzerland, Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland are also affected.
A report published today highlights how insurance companies are concerned about what conduct risk really means in practice, including both direct and B2B and B2C operating models. There is increasing recognition that further work is necessary in establishing an underlying conduct risk framework, through which conduct risk is managed from board level to the rest of the company.
With the 2013 hurricane season, which officially runs from 1 June to 30 November, now underway, all the main forecasters are predicting another above-average season for windstorm activity. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is the latest to predict 13-20 named storms, of which 3-6 could become major (category 3+) hurricanes.
Schneider Electric has launched its new MGE Galaxy 300i UPS system.
Galaxy 300i is a 3-phase UPS product that is fully RoHS (Restriction of the use of Hazardous Substances) compliant. The power efficiency rates up to 90.5% with output transformer, higher than other UPS systems with similar features.
The winners of the 2013 Business Continuity Awards were announced last night at a Gala Dinner and ceremony hosted by comedian Marcus Brigstocke at the London Hilton on Park Lane. Among the winners, USAA, Camelot, HP, Zurich and the Cross-Sector Safety & Security Communications Partnership. Read on for a full list of the stars from the night...
Following news that UK anti-bribery legislation may be relaxed, legal experts are warning that the UK government may risk sending the wrong message to businesses. "The Bribery Act was unusual in that it was accompanied by statutory guidance on its interpretation. The legislation was always about the ability of business to operate profitably, but ethically by Western standards, in the global market place,” Mark Surguy, partner at global law firm Eversheds.
AIG in Europe has announced the launch of an enhanced oil and gas product offering increased limits and cover and stronger specialist loss control services. According Oil & Gas UK, a fresh wave of investment in the next few years will boost output in the sector from 1.5m barrels of oil a day to 2m. This surge in activity is being driven by a combination of higher oil prices and the extension of small-field tax allowances.
Drew Gibson has joined Atos Consulting Business Continuity and Resilience team from Canary Wharf Group, where he was business continuity and risk manager. Gibson joins the Atos team to lead the development of its crisis management offering and provide a range of planning, training and exercising for their clients.
New research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) shows that cyber crime costs its members around £785 million per year as they fall victim to fraud and online crime. The report shows that 41% of FSB members have been a victim of cyber crime in the last 12 months, putting the average cost at around £4,000 per business.
Beazley has hired Matthew Norris to join its growing European small business team. Norris joins Beazley from Hiscox, where he was global product head for technology and data risks.
24 bodies have been recovered and significant damage reported in Oklahoma City in the US after a tornado ripped through the city of Moore. Rescue operations are ongoing and the death toll is expected to in the coming hours as rescue teams expect to find people trapped under collapsed infrastructure. The tornado that affected Moore was classified as an EF-4 on the Enhanced Fujita scale.
Palisade has signed a contract to provide Halcrow with risk analysis software that plays a key role in reducing the effects of severe flooding. The construction company uses it to help water companies protect their critical assets, including as water treatment works and pumping stations. The software will also play a role in in quantifying the certainty with which forecasts can be made is an important element of the decision making process.
Oslo-based cyber security outfit, Norman Shark, has today released a report detailing a large and sophisticated cyber-attack infrastructure that they suggest originates from India. The attacks, conducted by private threat actors over a period of three years and still ongoing, showed no evidence of state-sponsorship but the primary purpose of the global command-and-control network appears to be intelligence gathering from a combination of national security targets and private sector companies.
A new report by UNISDR and PwC warns large multinationals’ dependencies on international supply chains, infrastructure and markets poses a systemic risk to ‘business as usual’. Ban Ki Moon has described economic losses from disasters as “out of control”, after a separate report was released (GAR13) showed mounting losses this century from catastrophic events topping US$2.5trn.
Aon eSolutions has today launched a guide for organisations considering using Risk Management Information Systems. The educational guide helps clients identify areas for consideration when thinking of investing in a RMIS and the value and potential return on investment. The guide draws on client feedback and Aon’s own research findings to highlight why organisations might invest in an RMIS.
According to a study by Munich Re, the global insurance market is set to grow strongly in the coming years. Munich Re’s Insurance Market Outlook 2013 arrives at the conclusion that growth rates will be especially strong in emerging countries. Growth in the reinsurance market will be slower than that in the primary insurance industry.
ACE Group is advising UK companies to prepare now for the increased liability risks they could face as they expand their exporting activities. ACE’s advice comes during UKTI’s Export Week and follows Prime Minister David Cameron’s assertion that if 100,000 more SMEs started selling overseas they could add £30 billion to the British economy and wipe out the trade deficit.
US-based risk management society, RIMS has commended Congressman Bennie G. Thompson, the Ranking Member of the Committee of Homeland Security, for introducing Fostering Resilience to Terrorism Act of 2013 that would extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) for 10 years. TRIA, legislation that protects organisations’ ability to purchase sufficient insurance to cover acts of terrorism, is set to expire on 31 December 2014.
Markel has launched a new flexible liability product for charities and community groups which will be available to brokers through the insurer’s e-trading system. The product is one of the few in the market which provides protection for policy holders for damages arising from abuse. With a minimum premium of £75 for public liability, the policy has been designed to provide simple, easy, modular options for cover that can be selected according to specific needs.
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has appointed James Tuplin as a technology risks underwriter within the financial lines team. He is based in the London office and reports to David Cable, head of UK commercial professional indemnity in the UK.
Four insurers of construction risks in the Lloyd’s market have joined forces to offer underwriting capacity sufficient to lead the largest construction risks in the world across all major onshore risk categories. The consortium comprises syndicates managed by Beazley, Canopius, Hardy and Talbot, all organisations with long experience of writing construction risks.They will be able to provide capacity up to US$166m per risk.
Markel International has appointed Bhavik Desai as an underwriter in its professional and financial risks division. Desai joins Markel after seven years at AIG, most recently as an underwriter and team leader within the professional indemnity division.
RiskSTOP and UK General Insurance Group have entered into a three year risk management partnership. Independent risk control service provider RiskSTOP will carry out on-site and questionnaire based surveys on behalf of UK General, as well as managing the implementation of risk improvements through its Assist service.
• 50% of businesses in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain expect it to be two years or more until economic recovery
• 66% plan to respond to the delayed recovery by expanding their operations into new countries over the next 5 years
• 29% view Asia as a key area for business expansion, 27% South America and 16% Africa
• 44% consider compliance with local regulations the biggest risk to their expansion
Alexander Ankel, currently CEO of Allianz Turkey, has been named as the new Regional CEO of Asia for Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, Allianz SE’s dedicated brand for corporate and specialty insurance customers. He will be based in Singapore, and starts in this new position on July 1, 2013
The aviation industry continues to defy expectations with claims and premiums for airline insurance lower in 2012 than in 2011, according to Aon. Lead hull and liability premiums were US $1.61bn in 2012, down from US $1.81bn in 2011. Major losses in 2012 totalled US$324m, nearly 40% less than the US$522m recorded in 2011. The overall estimated incurred claims total was US$924m down 20% against the US$1.13bn total claims in 2011.
Insurance cover for environmental losses is often incomplete or even non-existent without a dedicated environmental policy in place. That is the finding of IUA research into potential claims scenarios. It highlights the gaps in cover that exist when relying on standard public liability and property policies, or even public liability policies with regulatory clean up and contamination extensions.
The number of dawn raids conducted by the Financial Services Authority almost halved in one year, with only 11 raids conducted in 2012, down from 21 raids in 2011, says City law firm RPC. RPC says that the number of dawn raids peaked in 2009 (37 raids) and 2010 (36). During this period, the FSA made an explicit commitment to tackle insider trading and other forms of market abuse. Since 2010, the number of raids has fallen sharply.
Towers Watson has named Michael Murphy as managing director of its risk consulting and software (RCS) business in EMEA. Murphy has more than 20 years’ experience in the insurance industry in local and regional leadership roles in both insurance companies and consultancy. These roles have spanned life, non-life, health and reinsurance companies and as managing director, finance director, chief actuary and non-executive
Investment institutions are more acutely aware of the risks they face since the global financial crisis but many still need to improve the way those risks are communicated internally, according to new research by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The survey found that more than three-quarters of respondents said their organisation had a very risk-aware culture today. This compares with only 30% that made risk their highest priority in 2007.
Research from business advisory, Deloitte reveals 58% of 18-24 year olds are unwilling to use the technology. While some would consider telematics if their car insurance premiums were discounted, about a third (35%) of 18-24 year old car insurance buyers would not accept telematics at any discount. Almost all (92%) of 18-24 year old olds opposed cite intrusiveness as a reason for rejecting the technology.
Ecclesiastical Insurance has announced the appointment of Mark Hews as group chief executive officer. Hews joined Ecclesiastical in April 2009 as group chief financial officer and executive director of Ecclesiastical Insurance. Hews has over 20 years’ experience in the insurance industry and has undertaken a variety of roles on the boards of HSBC Life, M&S Life and Aviva Healthcare.
SunGard Availability Services and Workware Systems have announced the launch of WorkwareOne Mobile, a cloud-based platform for advanced, intelligence driven operational policing support. Developed to provide total situational awareness for police officers in the course of their normal operational duties, WorkwareOne uses existing police data for improved crime prevention.
SunGard Availability Services and Workware Systems have announced the launch of WorkwareOne Mobile, a cloud-based platform for advanced, intelligence driven operational policing support. Developed to provide total situational awareness for police officers in the course of their normal operational duties, WorkwareOne uses existing police data for improved crime prevention.
Broker Miller has renewed its contract with Phoenix for a further three years. The renewal represents a 50 per cent increase of services, based on the usage of Phoenix’s online back-up solution.
Comedian Marcus Brigstocke is to host the 2013 Business Continuity Awards Gala Dinner. The Business Continuity Awards recognise the endeavours of business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals. Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year's winners will be announced and awarded at the Gala Dinner on Thursday 30th May.
Xchanging has launched a service that provides end-to-end management of salvage sales for the insurance market. Xchanging Recovery Marketplace, or XRM, aims at improving efficiency by actively targeting and matching buyers and sellers through the delivery of a fully managed service covering all associated logistics of storage delivery transportation and payment.
Following a multi-million pound investment to enhance and upgrade its business continuity centre in Hamilton, Scotland; IT services and business continuity provider Phoenix is extending an open invitation to anyone interested in IT or business continuity, to visit its newly extended and improved centre on 30th April for educational presentations, guided tours of the facility and hands-on experience of the technology.
Lockton has partnered with Data Insurance Licensing to provide a new broad coverage, high indemnity policy that will indemnify organisations if their data is permanently lost. Developed by Data Insurance and backed by Lloyd’s, Lockton is introducing this data loss insurance policy to the north American market on 1st June. The also allows the insured to assign a value to the data that they choose to insure.
PageOne Communications and Swissphone have announced the launch of its first triple-resilient alerting solution. Building on the Responder two-way pager launched in 2011, the new version supports dual-frequency paging with SMS fall-back to provide the ultimate in flexibility and resilience for critical alerting applications. The new Responder pager is capable of operating on a local paging frequency as normal; and in the event of a local system failure or the phasing out of local transmitter legacy equipment, it will also receive messages on PageOne’s national wide-area paging network.
More small businesses than ever are facing the threat of losing confidential information through cyber attacks, according to research published today by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).
The 2013 Information Security Breaches Survey has shown that 87 per cent of small businesses across all sectors experienced a breach in the last year. This is up more than 10 per cent and cost small businesses up to 6 per cent of their turnover, when they could protect themselves for far less.
Risk leaders are struggling to identify and manage major risks, says a new report from Aon. Readiness for the top 10 risks dropped 7% from the 2011 survey and reported loss of income increased 14%. Of the 28 industries defined in the report, only three – pharma/biotech, non-aviation transportation manufacturing and agribusiness – reported the same or improved levels of readiness this year.
A deadly earthquake struck China’s Sichuan Province on Saturday morning, killing at least 157 people and injuring more than 5,700 others. An unknown number of residents remain listed as missing or trapped under rubble, according to reports from Aon Benfield’s Impact Forecasting team.
Towers Watson has bolstered its crisis management broking and consultancy operation with the appointment of three senior specialist insurance brokers.
Mark Steddon, based in London, has joined as the global head of terrorism and political violence brokerage.
The London Marathon is set to take place in London on Sunday 21 April amid heightened security. Following the two bomb explosions at the Boston Marathon in the US on 15 April, authorities in London have reviewed security arrangements for the London run and have increased police presence along the race route.
A committee of US senators has heard from the LMA that collaborative working between the commercial sector and the broad range of government agencies and the military has been a significant factor in the decline in piracy attacks off the coast of Somalia.The LMA’s head of underwriting Neil Smith told senators that the lessons of governmental cooperation learned in Somalia could well be applied to other piracy hotspots.
The Boston Marathon attack was the first high-profile successful act of terror in the US since 9/11, but one of the dozens of plots launched against the US homeland since then. The casualty toll stands at three fatalities, with 144 injured, 17 of whom are in critical condition. Most of the property damage appears to be within 10-20 feet of the explosions, and insured property losses are unlikely to exceed $1m. BI costs may be the larger source of insurance claims.
SunGard Availability Services has signed workplace recovery contracts with two global financial institutions in India, signalling its continued expansion into the country. Today’s announcement takes SunGard’s total available capacity to over 1,000 dedicated workplace recovery positions and 260 seats for syndicated recovery.
Utilities disruptions and traffic congestion persist amid ongoing rescue operations in the city of West, in the US state of Texas, following an earlier explosion at a fertiliser plant. Up to 40 people remain unaccounted for, and 160 others were injured in the accident at the plant of the West Fertilizer Company. The strength of the explosion affected as many as 50 residential properties, which were damaged and evacuated as a result.
One in three insurance risk executives worldwide are unhappy with existing links between risk management and their executive pay policies but have no plans to change the current approach, according to Towers Watson. Towers’ latest global enterprise risk management and insurance survey asked chief risk officers, chief financial officers and chief actuaries about the progress and development of ERM activity within their companies.
Investigators are searching for the individuals responsible for detonating two bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing at least three people, including an eight year old, and injuring scores of others. The scale of the attack, coupled with the fact there has been no claim of responsibility indicates that this was likely the work of an individual or a small group, according to Exclusive Analysis. The incident demonstrates that the individual or group responsible has achieved effective operational security and developed the capability to construct several small but effective IEDs.
Gallagher Heath has been awarded a place on the Insurance Services Framework (ISF) following a competitive tender process, led by the Government Procurement Service (GPS). The ISF was set up following extensive collaboration with public sector organisations and representatives from the insurance industry to provide an online platform through which public bodies can more quickly and cost-effectively procure insurance protection and additional support services.
Underwriting group Kiln has just completed its implementation of Fineos Claims across its London Market claims operation. Michael Kelly, CEO Fineos, said, “We are delighted to be supporting Kiln, one of the leaders at Lloyd's. The two teams have worked extremely well together. Furthermore, Kiln employees have been trained to use our Fineos Configuration Studio which will make them self-sufficient in addressing change requests.”
The Metropolitan Police Service, City of London Police and the BTP are finalising preparations for the policing operation for Baroness Thatcher’s funeral on 17th April, when extensive road closures and bus diversions in central London will be in place. There will be a range of security measures, in line with the current threat level. A mobile team of officers, called reserves, will be deployed ready to respond if needed to events anywhere in London.
The UK’s failure to capitalise on the commercialisation of its technology means it is no longer at the forefront for global technology research and innovation, a cornerstone for driving economic growth. As a result, British tech practitioners are upping sticks and heading across the pond to the US where funding is readily available from investors, willing to support R&D, production and commercialisation. This is according to Clive Mayne, managing partner, ExeTec Consulting.
KPMG has appointed Phil Smart as UK head of insurance. Mr Smart joined KPMG in 1991, and has been a partner for the past ten years. During this time, he has been client lead partner for a number of major international insurance and financial services groups.
William Hague has announced that a global centre for cybersecurity is to be opened at Oxford University. Under the proposal, the government will provide £1m to fund the centre for the next two years. The Global Centre for Cyber Security and Capacity Building will work to help countries develop plans to deal with cyber risk. Hague says the new centre will act as "a beacon of expertise" in the sector.
Cloud computing and communications company, Qubic, has launched a new fibre-to-the-cabinet service, Vitesse, providing a direct connection to the datacentre. Qubic delivers connectivity over a wires only, configurable service. This ensures that traffic to the hosted servers it provides is carried on an entirely private line, without connecting to the Internet.
Specialist insurer Markel International has gone live on Sequel’s Eclipse Underwriting software. Markel has rationalised and consolidated its many lines including historical acquisitions, Lloyd’s, companies and non-bureau business on to one system, supporting hundreds of users worldwide, running on Sequel’s software.
Xchanging has begun the roll out of free Wi-Fi access in the City of London. The first installation at 34 Leadenhall Street will be followed by installations at Lloyd’s and the London Underwriting centre later this year. Further locations will be added during 2013. Xchanging is also considering hosting free Wi-Fi in other UK insurance hub cities.
News in brief: Week to 5th April 2013, including news from SunGard Availability Services, RPC, AJ Gallagher, EIOPA, Kroll and PwC.
Arthur J Gallagher International announces today that Janice Deakin has been appointed UK commercial director, a new strategic role that spans its UK distribution, underwriting and affinity businesses. She will report directly to CEO David Ross and become a member of the AJGI executive committee.
Insurers are bracing themselves for a flurry of last-chance professional negligence claims relating to the build-up to the financial crisis, according to law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. RPC explains that normally claims for professional negligence have to be made within six years of the alleged negligence taking place. The window for the majority of claims relating to activity in 2007 (just ahead of the credit crunch) therefore closes this year.
Gallagher Heath has recruited Alan Sanderson and Peter Cooper to drive forward its expansion plans within UK schemes and affinities, having set its sights on doubling the division’s revenues to $100m by 2015.
The Financial Services Authority was today replaced by two new supervisors, the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The PRA works alongside the FCA creating a “twin peaks” regulatory structure in the UK. The FCA is responsible for promoting effective competition, ensuring that relevant markets function well, and for the conduct regulation of all financial services firms.
According to a survey among its data recovery customers, recovery provider Kroll Ontrack says that while 60% of respondents had a backup solution in place at the time of data loss, the backup was not current or operating properly. These findings provide key insight into the importance of diligently monitoring and verifying that a backup is successfully operating and capturing a current, accurate snapshot.
Jim Bichard has taken on the role of London Market Insurance leader at PwC. Bichard is a partner with 16 years’ experience at the firm including five years in their New York practice.
The Business Continuity Awards recognise the endeavours of business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals. Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year's winners will be announced and awarded at the Gala Dinner on Thursday 30th May 2013 – an evening that brings together industry leaders for a night of networking and celebration. This year's shortlist follows...
EIOPA today released four consultation papers providing the detail of its proposed interim measures guidelines, which it proposes should be adopted by national supervisors from 1 January 2014. The consultation papers cover governance, a forward-looking assessment by insurers of their own risks (based on the ORSA principles), internal model pre-application process and submission of information to national competent authorities.
SunGard Availability Services has today published a report suggesting that steady and sustained growth over recent years in managed services adoption has led to an improvement in the UK’s business availability practices. They believe organisations have made a shift in their approach to business continuity, building resilience into the business through investment in cloud and virtualisation technologies, as well as managed recovery programmes.
Lloyd’s has announced a profit of £2.77bn for 2012, marking a return to profit following last year’s loss of £516m, which was the costliest year on record for natural catastrophes. Speaking about the results, Lloyd’s CEO, Richard Ward said: “The Lloyd’s market has posted a strong result. This is despite experiencing one of the costliest natural catastrophes in history, Superstorm Sandy, and incurring net claims of £10bn.
The Ministry of Justice’s claims reforms, set to be implemented between 2 April and 31 July, will have a profound impact on the way in which organisations in England and Wales manage their insurance claims notification procedures. According to Marsh, organisations that fail to adhere to new timeframes stipulated by the reforms, or Pre-Action Protocols, run the risk of paying higher legal costs and insurance premiums as a result.
The European Commission today adopted a consultative paper that launches a public debate on how best to design a new international agreement to combat climate change. The Consultative Communication raises key questions and invites the views of stakeholders on the new agreement, which is to be completed by the end of 2015 and to apply from 2020.
A project to standardise the terms of engagement for marine surveyors and marine loss adjusters working on behalf of Lloyd’s and London market underwriters has been completed by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) and the Joint Marine Claims Committee (JMCC).
Xchanging has been appointed by Homecare Insurance, part of CPP Group, to provide business continuity and recovery solutions for its infrastructure. Under the three year contract, Xchanging will provide solutions to provide Homecare with stand-alone capability as part of its approach to risk management, prevention and recovery. This will include a hot-start business recovery centre, provided by Xchanging.
FERMA is calling on the European Parliament to ensure that all insurance buyers are entitled to a minimum European standard of disclosure in the revised Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD2). This is the view FERMA has strongly expressed in a position paper to the Parliamentary Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee which will consider the draft directive before it goes to Plenary for a final vote in July.
From 18th March until the end of April, in Phoenix’s 18 centres across the country, experts will be available to answer questions on a host of business continuity related matters, including business continuity management planning, recovering data in the cloud and workarea recovery. These local clinics are being offered free of charge during BCAW.
BIBA says that the fight is not over following the Financial Services Compensation Scheme’s (FSCS) recent announcement on an interim levy on insurance brokers. The FSCS has confirmed that it will be raising an interim levy of £16m from the general insurance intermediation sub-class (SB02) for the 2012/13 financial year.
Last year was the worst for IT services contract activity since 2002. This is according to research from Ovum, which shows performance in the three months to the end of December 2012 falling well below the levels seen in the same period of 2011, ensuring that annual IT services contract activity fell to its lowest level for 10 years, both in terms of total contract value (TCV) and deal volume.
The British weather continued to catch UK businesses by surprise in 2012, according to new research released by the Chartered Management Institute, British Standards Institution, the Business Continuity Institute and the Cabinet Office. Three in five firms suffered financially as a result, with managers estimating the average cost to their organisation in excess of £52,000, and some as high as £1m.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) has announced the appointment of Steve White, currently head of compliance and training, to the post of chief executive, with effect from 1 May 2013. BIBA chairman, Andy Homer, additionally announced that Graeme Trudgill, BIBA’s head of corporate affairs, will also be promoted to the main board of BIBA. He will take the post of executive director reporting to Steve White, also effective from 1 May 2013.
The DAS Group has announced the acquisition of Bristol based law firm, CW Law. CW Law currently employs over 60 staff and specialises in personal injury, employment and property disputes.
Beazley has selected Hazelwood Street Consultants to provide response services under its kidnap and ransom (K&R) insurance policy. Hazelwood Street has entered into an exclusive relationship with Beazley to support insured clients. The Beazley policy provides corporate and family cover supported by a suite of services from Hazelwood Street, including crisis planning and management, training, negotiation advice and trauma management.
Peak Re, the Hong Kong-based reinsurer focusing primarily on the Asia-Pacific market, has selected AIR’s catastrophe modelling solutions to manage its catastrophe risk.
The catastrophe modelling team at Aon Benfield has launched a suite of new scenario models to generate loss estimates for specific historic or hypothetical events. Loss estimates for events such as the storm surge by Superstorm Sandy, the 2011 Thailand floods, and the highest insured loss European windstorm Kyrill, can now be calculated to gauge the financial impact of their potential reoccurrence.
The Law Society has told the government that its proposals to increase the small claims limit in personal injury cases stem from propaganda, generated by insurers. Responding to a consultation on arrangements concerning the small claims limit, the Law Society said the insurance industry is lobbying the government into adopting a policy that will see genuine accident victims left without the benefit of legal advice.
A new UK Cyber Security Champion was announced yesterday at the Cyber Security Challenge UK Awards in Bristol. Stephen Miller, a 28 year old chemist from Hertfordshire beat thousands of registered candidates and successfully navigated several online and face-to-face competitions over the past year to claim the prize. Stephen currently works as a Lab Team Manager at a major pharmaceutical company overseeing the testing and manufacture of their clinical drugs. He has been playing the Challenge since it launched in 2010.
James Hastings has been appointed managing director of Markel’s professional and financial risks division. He replaces David Armes, who retired in December 2012 after more than 10 years with Markel.
Regulatory proceedings and investigations are increasingly affecting businesses on both sides of the Atlantic as companies are continuing to navigate a crowded field of regulatory issues and litigation. This is according to law firm Fulbright & Jaworski International’s latest Litigation Trends Survey, which suggests that the trend for increased regulatory investigations is showing no sign of abating.
Telefónica UK has become the first UK mobile operator to have achieved ISO 22301 across all of its operations from BSI. ISO 22301, which has evolved from the internationally recognised British Standard BS 25999, endorses a plan of management practices and preventive solutions to protect an organisation against unexpected disruptions which may affect ability of the company to operate.
With less than 10,000 lives lost worldwide, 2012 was the least deadly for natural disasters in the last 10 years, due largely to the lack of major events outside high-income countries with the infrastructure and resources to withstand their socio-economic impacts. However, new research from risk analysis company, Maplecroft reveals that resilience to major weather and seismic events is not improving in some of the world’s most important growth markets, leaving large sections of their populations and economies at ‘extreme risk.’
JLT has made a number of key new hires in its financial institutions team. Roger Maxted and John Greene join JLT as partners; Tracy Miller as insurance company industry specialist.
Miller has increased its presence in the French market with three senior reinsurance hires; Stéphane Nadjar, Eric Le Mercier and Emmanuel Figuereau.
David Bonehill, claims and risk services director at Ecclesiastical Insurance Group, has been appointed as the new chairman of the Claims Faculty board of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII).
Marsh has today launched its Insurance Maturity Model. The innovative model helps clients assess their current insurance activities against a best practice model in key areas such as governance; insurable and non-insurable risk identification, analysis and evaluation; cost of risk approach; risk reporting and monitoring; risk transfer resourcing; and the management of third party providers.
BIBA have approved a template with the Association of British Insurers which will make it easier to implement agreements between brokers and insurers. Discussions on standardising templates for Terms of Business Arrangements (TOBAs) took place at the Broker Insurer Forum, an ABI-BIBA group, and an agreement was reached on a generic format which can now be used by ABI members when issuing amended TOBAs to their broker partners.
The number of intensive on-site Arrow inspections to insurance businesses from the FSA has jumped 38% so far this year, with 47 visits in 2012 to (to September 30) compared to just 34 for the whole of 2011, according to law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain.
The Jackson reforms, due to take effect on the 1st April 2013, leave law firms at risk of professional negligence claims. Any CFA entered into prior to 1st April where ATE has not been purchased can potentially leave clients facing bankruptcy or law firms’ exposed to negligence claims. The new rules prohibit the recovery of ATE premiums for policies purchased on or after 1st April.
The Women’s Security Society (WSS) launched last night in the City of London. The WSS is a new and society comprised of women representing all interconnected security disciplines. The goal of the WSS is to encourage the advancement of women across all security platforms in the profession.
The founders and board members of the new society welcomed guests from diverse areas of the security world.
Recent innovations in the personal insurance market are set to influence the commercial insurance arena in coming years. This is according to new research conducted by Xuber, Xchanging’s insurance software business. Personal Insurance Trends for Commercial Insurance to Watch in 2013 - How Innovations in Personal Insurance will Inspire Commercial Insurance to Raise the Bar identifies the shifting expectations of consumers and the increased relative importance placed on non-price related factors such as response times and ease of access to data.
The European Parliament plenary meeting to consider the Omnibus 2 amendments to the Solvency II directive has been moved back to October. Whilst no explanation of the rationale for the delay has been announced, this delay will allow the results of the current impact study on the impact of Solvency II on products with long-term guarantees to be considered and resulting amendments to the legislation to be drafted.
Oil and gas firms globally are increasingly exposed to cyber threats as a result of converging technological, terrorism and political risks. Oil and gas firms with installations in politically sensitive geographies are more exposed to cyber attacks, given the potentially crippling nature of any ensuing disruption on national energy supplies.
The chancellor of the exchequer has today announced that Andrew Bailey, executive director, Bank of England and managing director, prudential business unit, Financial Services Authority, has been approved to become deputy governor at the Bank of England responsible for prudential regulation and the chief executive officer of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
The chancellor of the exchequer has today announced that Andrew Bailey, executive director, Bank of England and managing director, prudential business unit, Financial Services Authority, has been approved to become deputy governor at the Bank of England responsible for prudential regulation and the chief executive officer of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
BAE Systems and Vodafone Group have signed a deal to offer a range of communications security services. Part of BAE Systems' drive to grow its cyber and security arm, BAE Systems Detica, products will initially focused on smart phones and tablets. The first commercial element of the strategic partnership will be a new cloud-based mobile security solution, Vodafone Mobile Threat Manager.
Claims for flood and storm damage in 2012 cost insurers £1.19 billion, the highest annual figure since the £3 billion paid in 2007. During the wettest recorded year in England and Wales and second wettest in the UK, insurers handled 486,000 claims for flood and storm damage from businesses, homeowners and motorists. Insurers paid out £40m in business interruption payments.
The deadline for entries for the Business Continuity Awards has been extended to 28th February. The Business Continuity Awards recognise business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals whose innovative strategies and industry savvy make them stand out above the rest.
Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year’s winners will be announced at a gala dinner and ceremony on Thursday 30th May at the Hilton on Park Lane in London – an evening that brings industry leaders together for a night of networking and celebration.
A meteor exploded today over the city of Chelyabinsk, in Russia's central Ural Mountains, injuring hundreds and causing damage to buildings in six cities. According to the Russian Academy of Sciences, the massive meteor weighed 10 tons and entered the earth’s atmosphere at a speed as high as 33,000 mph.
Professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal has launched a European cyber practice and appointed Wayne Grundy, formerly of Raytheon, as managing director. A&M has seen increasing demand from European companies for support in addressing cyber security issues, at a time when the EU is urging businesses to declare publicly when they have suffered serious cyber attacks.
Commenting on the latest developments in the horse meat scandal, Andrew Underwood, head of supply chain at KPMG, believes that a lack of consistency in the way produce is monitored makes it too easy to take advantage of gaps in the food supply chain: "Many companies use supply chains that revolve around a web of international partners, but these vast networks can bring additional risk."
Phoenix has signed a multi-million pound deal to deliver refreshed IT infrastructure and on-going IT services for automotive specialist Manheim’s UK operations. The agreement with Phoenix will see Manheim consolidate its UK IT infrastructure, multi-site hosting, backup and replication, management, monitoring and remote and onsite support for their European operations.
A National Audit Office review of the UK government’s strategy for cyber security indicates a concern over the lack of skills needed to fight the persistent threat of cyber crime. The NAO review identifies several additional challenges faced by the government in implanting its strategy.
Members and students of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) looking for quick, convenient access and the added benefits of up-to-date technology will now be able to study for their qualifications on their portable electronic devices as the CII launches study texts in ebook format.
Managing general agent Ascent Underwriting has launched new coverage for emerging cyber risks. The LUC-based MGA will be working with London Market brokers providing insurance products to clients on a worldwide basis and will specialise in writing coverage for non-tangible risk including cloud computing, data privacy, network interruption, professional liability and intellectual property perils.
A powerful winter storm brought significant snowfall, hurricane-force wind gusts and coastal flooding to the US Northeast and parts of eastern Canada on Friday and Saturday. At least six storm-related fatalities have been recorded. The ‘Nor’easter’ prompted states of emergency to be declared in six states; travel bans imposed.
Likely failure to agree a new cabinet will increase unrest and trigger army imposition of a technocrat government and fresh elections, according to risk analysts at Exclusive Analysis. In the likely event that there is no agreement, it predicts civil unrest will increase, reaching a level that cannot be contained by the police.
Revelations last month that beef products sold to some major UK companies contained horse meat have widened to include frozen food brand, Findus. The unfolding situation offers a clear warning to organisations that they have a duty to assure their supply chain for their end consumers.
Risk and claims management software provider CS Stars, has announced the appointment of Robert Bentley as president and CEO.
Despite its economic problems, the UK has seen improvement in its global risk ranking, according to Maplecroft's latestGlobal Risks Atlas. The UK has moved from the ‘medium’ to ‘low risk’ and up from 140th most at risk in 2012 to 157th, demonstrating that it is well placed to overcome global risks.
EU digital agenda lead, Neelie Kroes, warns that additional reporting could soon be in place for firms in the energy, transport, internet, banking and healthcare sectors. Launching the EU's Cybersecurity Strategy in Brussels Thursday, Kroes spoke of cyber incidents that disrupt millions and undermine trust in the online world.
Legal expenses insurer DAS has had its partnership contract renewed with Hiscox to provide personal and commercial legal expenses, as well as motor breakdown cover.
Uncertainty still surrounds the exact track this winter storm will take, but what is certain is that there is a high probability of snow accumulations of more than one foot over much of southern New England and parts of New York during the next 48 hours, AIR Worldwide warns.
Cross-party political support is needed to ensure that the UK gets on top of the flood risk the ABI said today at a flood summit organised by the Labour Party. Last year was the wettest on record in England, and only just short of being the wettest ever across the UK. Four of the five wettest years on record have been since 2000.
Almost half of IT professionals are deterred from keeping sensitive data in the cloud because of fear of government intervention and possible legal action, according to a survey carried out by Lieberman Software.
The recent announcement from PRA leaves much discretion for supervisors and gives rise to a potential risk of different standards and requirements between similar firms, PwC says. Consistency in the application of ICAS+, it adds, is key.
Sterling Insurance has launched a new subsidiary, Sterling Technologies, building on its already established IT service provision, serving such clients as Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group, RBS, CUNA Mutual and John Lewis for the last three years.
Today is the 10th annual Safer Internet Day, organised by international association, Insafe, each year to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children. This year’s theme focuses on online rights and responsibilities, designed to encourage users to 'connect with respect'.
The use of electronic claims files in the London company market is much more extensive than previously stated, an analysis by the IUA has revealed. New data shows that the percentage of new claims submitted each month electronically is now close to 90%, up from just over 70% at the beginning of 2012.
Dual has announced today the launch of a new international directors’ & officers’ liability (D&O) programme aimed at foreign companies listed on US securities markets through American depository receipts. The underwriter has partnered with Everest Re to offer this new capacity, and Scott Misson has been named chief underwriter for this business.
Retail banks across the globe will see IT spending grow 3.4%, reaching US$118.6bn in 2013, as CIOs focus on customer satisfaction and revenue growth. This is according to Ovum, which finds that European banks are lagging behind their North American and Asia-Pacific counterparts, with just 1.8% growth expected, compared with 3.3% and 5.1%, respectively. Ovum’s Business Trends report also reveals that credit risk management and data privacy will become key regulatory compliance drivers of IT spending in 2013.
Allianz Commercial has confirmed that Chris Hanks will retire from his role as general manager at the end of June 2013. Mr Hanks will be succeeded by Simon McGinn. Currently director, commercial broker markets, Mr McGinn will also join the Allianz UK management board.
The British Insurance Brokers' Association (BIBA) has launched its 2013 Manifesto Meeting the Growth Challenge in the House of Commons to an audience of ministers, MPs, lords, senior government officials and brokers. Jonathan Evans MP, chair of the all-party parliamentary group on insurance and financial services, hosted the reception.
DWF and Fishburns have completed their anticipated merger. The firm now has over 2,000 staff and 13 offices throughout the UK and Ireland.
The number of countries experiencing escalating political violence rose by 36% from a year ago, a trend that is likely to continue given the heightened risk of regime instability in a growing number of countries, according to a joint report from Marsh and Maplecroft.
An attack on the US Embassy in Ankara suggests that the capability of terrorist organisation the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) or a PKK splinter group to attack state and diplomatic assets has increased,” according to a special report released by risk forecasting firm Exclusive Analysis.
Legal changes affecting the UK motor insurance market will lead to an increase in mergers and acquisition (M&A) activity among brokers, law firms and claims management companies, according to Deloitte.
Research on the highly virulent H5N1 avian influenza viruses resumed last week after a year-long ban. With the controversial lifting of the moratorium, researchers will now try to increase the transmissibility or virulence of H5N1 to help prepare vaccines and other medical treatments in case of a pandemic.
Xchanging has today launched its enhanced Fees Direct offering, Fees Direct+. The new service is an enhanced fees offering which can be taken up both in the London and international insurance markets. Through a partnership with LSG, Fees Direct+ will enable delivery of a unique, integrated, end to end expert management processing solution. Clients can be up and running with the service within three weeks.
Many companies still do not devote sufficient attention to cyber risks, despite an increase in frequency, scope, and sophistication – and harsher penalties for lack of regulatory compliance and loss of sensitive data. This finding comes from research conducted in association with the Federation of European Risk Management Associations (FERMA).
A year after the publication of the European Commission's draft revision to data protection legislation, which includes fines of up to one million Euros or two per cent of annual revenue for a data breach, penalties appear to be having had little effect on most firms' approach to information security, according to Iron Mountain. It reckons that for the majority of companies, the threat of fines has little impact on their company’s data protection policies to protect sensitive information.
With the consumerisation of technology, including the surge in BYOD, IT auditors are facing increasing challenges. To help auditors with their increasing demands and responsibilities, ISACA, a nonprofit association serving 100,000 IT professionals in 180 countries, has developed more than 40 customisable IT audit/assurance programs.
The insurance market across EMEA is expected to remain broadly stable in 2013 despite the losses that impacted the market globally in 2012, according to Marsh. Organisations across EMEA with attractive risks and good loss histories may still be able to secure reductions on their insurance rates, continuing a trend recorded in the last six months of 2012, Marsh notes in its Insurance Market Report 2013.
NextiraOne has launched dedicated cloud and disaster recovery suites. Located in the UK, these suites will be based on the technology platforms of Cisco, NetApp, EMC and VMWare and will include managed services for these suites during their life cycle.
Phoenix has announced the launch of its cloud-to-cloud backup service, following its first customers roll-out in the UK. Salesforce.com has chosen to back up its customer data to its own secure data store, which allows them to dictate the precise terms and conditions of their back-up.
Following agreement of the terms of reference by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission, European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority has launched the long-term guarantee impact study, which will test the application of Solvency II to products with attaching long-term guarantees.
QBE has launched CreditFlex, a top up commercial credit insurance facility that operates above an existing, non-QBE, primary whole-turnover policy.
Reputation and loss of brand value remain top concerns of large UK companies according to the Allianz Risk Barometer 2013. The concern relates to the rise in popularity of social media, with phenomena such as viral messaging and re-tweeting allowing negative comments to spread globally, regardless of merit, within very short time frames.
Audit committee members are concerned about the quality of information that they receive on cyber security according to a new survey of some 1,800 audit committee members in 21 countries undertaken by KPMG’s Audit Committee Institute.
As regulators start to assess the impact of potential rules to align the treatment of insurance across Europe, Deloitte is highlighting the huge implications for annuity providers. The EC's Long Term Guarantee Assessment will test the impact of different approaches to how insurers set reserves and capital for products like annuities.
RSA has appointed Tony Chaudhry as its new European director for its global specialty lines business.
Zurich Insurance in Italy has completed its roll-out of BAE Systems Detica NetReveal OnDemand managed service for claims fraud prevention. This is the first deployment of Detica NetReveal in Italy and forms part of Zurich’s global implementation programme.
Xuber, Xchanging’s insurance software business, has launched Xuber Claims, the first release from the next-generation suite of commercial insurance products announced at the company’s recent re-launch. Xuber Claims comprises a fully-integrated claims management solution with embedded workflow to optimise, automate and measure each stage of the business process from first notification of loss through coverage verification to final settlement.
Typhon is launching a marine convoy escort service aimed at enabling ship operators to transit the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. The safety of convoying through dangerous waters has been long established, Typhon will be the first company for over two hundred years to privately offer a naval-grade service to the commercial market.
Aon Benfield has launched its new weather reinsurance product for adverse weather losses in the UK. Index-based WExcess, developed with Swiss Re and weather risk management firm CelsiusPro, is designed to help mitigate the financial losses incurred by insurers during severe weather events, such as the recent UK winters, which have been among the coldest in recent history.
Crossrail has rejected claims made by the Unite union that blacklisting has taken place on the Crossrail project. In a statement, it says the Consulting Association was closed down in 2009 following enforcement action by the Information Commissioner, well before the award of the first tunnelling and station contracts in December 2010.
Commenting on the Prime Minister’s speech from earlier today, Eric Galbraith, BIBA chief executive, said: “I agree it is the right time to have this debate given the significant changes and challenges in the EU over the years. We need a stronger voice in the EU decision making process given that policies have a direct impact on UK businesses and consumers. A good example of this is how the recent Test-Achats gender case impacted the insurance sector and consumers in the UK.
As forecast snow has fallen across much of central and northern Britain, bringing disruption in some areas. Met Office forecasters are expecting a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow over southwestern areas overnight and on Tuesday.
General insurers saw solid business volumes growth and volumes are expected to grow at an even stronger pace over the next quarter, according to the today's CBI/PwC Financial Services Survey. Meanwhile, life insurance respondents noted strong growth in business volumes and income values, lifting profitability.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has given a cautious welcome to the Financial Services Authority’s proposals for changes to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme funding model. The policy statement and consultation issued by the FSA means that two of BIBA’s key lobbying issues have been achieved. Brokers will no longer have cross subsidies with banks meaning they will not pay for financial failures in the banking sector.
A new report from Swiss Re shows that better risk management can secure future energy supplies and reduce the impact of climate change. The report provides a framework for decision-makers when it comes to questions of renewable energies, greenhouse gas emissions and how to adapt to climate change. It also looks at how insurance can enable development in the energy sector.
A series of reports published today by Ovum suggest that 2013 will see cloud computing continue to grow rapidly as it tackles the IT challenges of reducing costs and boosting innovation. In the 2013 Trends to Watch: Cloud Computing report, Laurent Lachal, senior analyst, Ovum Software notes: “It takes a lot of effort from vendors and enterprises to actually make it work, and they will succeed in making it work in 2013, both on their own and as part of increasingly complex ecosystems.”
With much of Britain braced for more snow this weekend, some of the lessons learned preparing for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games could be just as useful now, according to Deloitte's resilience team.
The Met Office is warning of the risk of disruption as heavy snow is forecast across many parts of the UK tomorrow, Friday. A band of snow will push into the west into Friday morning with parts of Wales, the west of England and later Northern Ireland particularly at risk of heavy falls of snow and blizzard conditions in strong winds. A red warning has been issued for upland parts of southern Wales where accumulations of 10 to 15 cm are expected. Businesses are advised to review continuity plans where necessary.
A number of foreigners including Americans, Japanese and Europeans have been taken hostage after a group of gunmen stormed a gas pumping station and its employee barracks in Amenas, Algeria before dawn on Wednesday.
‘Express kidnapping’ is on the rise in South and Central America. This form of crime generally involves people being abducted, robbed and then forced to withdraw money from a cash point or hand over their PIN details, according to risk consultancy red24.
BP has said in a statement that the Algerian army is attempting to take control of the hostage situation at it's Amenas site in Algeria. "The situation remains unclear and we continue to seek updates from the authorities," reads the statement. "Sadly, there have been some reports of casualties but we are still lacking any confirmed or reliable information. There are also reports of hostages being released or escaping...
Two people were killed and 12 injured when a helicopter collided with a crane in central London this morning. The wreckage fell into Wandsworth Road, in Vauxhall, setting fire to cars and buildings. Transport disruptions on Wandsworth Road are likely for several days as clean-up and investigations take place.
A new survey published by the Business Continuity Institute and the British Standards Institution shows concern over cyber attacks continues to mount. The survey also reveals that 71% see the use of the Internet for malicious attacks as a major trend that requires a business continuity response with 42% seeking to manage the prevalence and high adoption of Internet-dependent services, such as the cloud, within their preparedness activities.
Markel International has appointed Hannah Purves as its new claims director. Based in London, she will lead the company’s international claims team of more than 50 specialists.
Aon Benfield has issued a warning over the potential ramifications of a severe space weather event, as solar and geomagnetic activity is predicted to peak in the coming 12 months. Its new report Geomagnetic Storms reviews the potential threat and risk management implications. it argues geomagnetic storms and extreme solar weather are a realistic threat to three critical areas of modern infrastructure, including electrical power distribution, telecommunications and global satellite navigation.
A senior Lloyds executive is suing the British bank Lloyd's Banking group for £1 million in lost earnings, alleging that he was forced out of his post after blowing the whistle on "startling" failures in the bank's disaster recovery systems. In a submission to the Central London Employment Tribunal, Stephen Clements, claims that two-thirds of the bank's systems were not subject to resiliency tests, leaving "very serious gaps” in their ability to recover critical IT systems.
The Sri Lankan government’s decision to mandate the use of offshore armouries could potentially invalidate UK Private Maritime Security Companies (PMSC) insurance and affect their ability to win or retain security contracts from shipowners. According to Marsh, those most likely to be affected are UK PMSCs that breach the UK Government’s Export Control Order of 2008 (ECO), which controls the trade and export licensing of military and dual-use goods and regulates the use of third party floating armouries.
Recently retired Assistant Commissioner Frank Armstrong has been honoured with the Queen's Policing Medal for Distinguished Service. Mr Armstrong is also the latest judge to join the 2013 Business Continuity Awards panel. Mr Armstrong spent the first 18 years of his policing career with the Met Police before joining the City of London Police as Commander in December 2000.
The spread of violence and instability from Syria and Libya; increasing terrorism across key growth economies; the heightened risk of social unrest driving regime change; and resource nationalism, will be the key drivers of political risk for 2013, according to the fifth annual Political Risk Atlas, from risk analysis firm Maplecroft.
The world is more at risk as persistent economic weakness saps our ability to tackle environmental challenges, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks 2013 report. The report highlights wealth gaps followed by unsustainable government debt as the top two risks, in a survey of over 1,000 experts and industry leaders, which reflects a slightly more pessimistic outlook for the coming 10 years.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has received Continuing Professional Development (CPD) accreditation from the Chartered Insurance Institute. BIBA members will now be able to receive CPD for reading BIBA’s regulation and technical updates, and attending its Compliance Forums.
For enterprises seeking to identify impacts that emerging technology trends can have on business continuity management, global IT association ISACA released a new white paper, which provides an overview of the impacts, benefits and opportunities of four emerging technologies as they relate to business continuity management: virtualisation, cloud computing, mobile devices and social networks.
Economic losses in 2012 make it the sixth-costliest natural disaster year on record since 1950, according to Aon Benfield’s soon to be released Annual Global Catastrophe report analysing global natural peril weather events. The report reveals that global natural disaster activity in 2012 produced 295 separate events that caused significant impacts to various parts of the world, with the United States sustaining nearly 90% of all global insured losses.
The FSA handed down a record-breaking £312 million in fines in 2012 (to December 19), smashing its previous record of £89 million (in 2010) by 251%, says City law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. RPC explains that the fines would have been much higher, but 71% of the businesses and individuals fined by the FSA received a discount for cooperating with the FSA. Without any discounts, the fines in 2012 would have amounted to £411m.
Lloyd’s of London has today announced its estimated net claims before tax from Superstorm Sandy are between $2bn and $2.5bn. The range of the claims estimate is consistent with insurance industry losses of between $20bn and $25bn. Lloyd's says it expects minimal impact on member capital and no impact on the Central Fund. As additional information emerges, Lloyd’s actual ultimate net claims from the event may vary from this preliminary estimate.
Business standards company BSI has published a new guidance standard to help organisations take practical steps towards mitigating risk and improving their business continuity management. ISO 22313 Societal Security – Business Continuity Management Systems – Guidance describes the steps businesses need to take in order to meet the requirements of ISO 22301.
Businesses in the capital expect to start hiring as normal again in the next six months, after a period of only taking on essential recruits in the first half of 2012, according to the latest CBI/KPMG London Business Survey. The Olympics brought a noticeable boost to employment which has now fallen back to more modest growth levels.
SunGard has identified ten trends in managed services and outsourcing for financial services companies in 2013. As cost pressures and regulatory requirements continue to challenge financial institutions’ and corporations’ ability to grow revenue, they are looking to outsourcing providers for additional managed services, according to Kalpesh Master, managing partner for managed services at SunGard.
The timetable for ending LIBOR quotes in some currencies and maturities was published today by the British Bankers' Association, following a month-long consultation with market users. The feedback statement summarises the findings of the consultation and sets out the BBA’s timescale for a phased discontinuation of certain LIBOR rates, in line with the sixth recommendation of the Wheatley Review.
The Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) and law firm Clyde & Co have jointly published new guidance on how insurance and reinsurance contracts may react in the event of a eurozone exit. The guidance contains a checklist of points for Lloyd’s managing agents to consider relating to governing law, jurisdiction, location of the parties, contract denomination and other matters and some example clauses.
SunGard Availability Services has achieved the ISO 27001:2005 standard for its enterprise-grade shared private cloud environment and managed services offering. The ISO 27001:2005 certification provides organisations with an internationally recognised, independent verification that the company is able to securely manage information security, retaining confidentiality, integrity and availability of all data.
The government today lifted the ban on hydrolic fracturing for shale gas or gas “fracking” in the UK, paving the way for access to a potentially abundant source of natural gas. This, in turn, could result in cheaper prices for consumers, as has been in the case in the US over the last five years.
With thousands of businesses already adversely affected by recent bad weather and flooding, new research released today by the UK’s largest commercial insurer, RSA suggests that small and medium-sized retailers are dangerously unprepared for interruptions to their Christmas trading period.
A rise in human rights violations from government crackdowns on public protest and political dissent is significantly increasing risks to business in ten of the world’s fastest growing economies, according to Maplecroft’s newly released Human Rights Risk Atlas 2013 (HRRA). The Atlas reveals growing socio-economic and political instability in the growth economies due to increasing levels of public dissent against governments and business interests.
CEO of Lockton International, Julian James has announced his plans to resign. Mike Hammond, chairman of Lockton’s international operations said in an announcement this morning that Mr James is to step down at the end of January 2013.
The Serious Fraud Office and the City of London Police today executed search warrants at three residential premises in Surrey (1) and Essex (2). Three men, aged 33, 41 and 47, have been arrested and taken to a London police station for interview in connection with the investigation into the manipulation of LIBOR. The men are all British nationals currently living in the United Kingdom.
HSBC is set to pay a record US$1.92bn fine to settle a money laundering probe carried out by US prosecutors. Europe's biggest bank has also reached agreement to achieve a global resolution with all other US government agencies that have investigated the firm's past conduct related to these issues and anticipates finalising an undertaking with the UK's FSA shortly.
Fluctuating prices will create chaotic chain reactions unless governments and businesses get to grips with a new world order defined by resource politics, according to a report released this morning by London-based think-tank Chatham House. Resources Futures shows that in an interconnected world, volatile prices pose far greater threats than physical scarcities.
Global business risk consultancy, Control Risks today published its annual report plotting global risk predictions for the coming year, and provides a detailed view from the markets that will matter most in 2013. The CRG report predicts significant challenges facing world leaders in a climate where economic uncertainty and political unrest have made holding power more problematic.
Airmic has issued a second Request for Proposal for companies interested in creating a global database of international insurance requirements, with a view to having the project completed by the end of 2014. Aon, Marsh and Willis are working with Airmic on the project, which is initially to provide a database to meet their own requirements. It is hoped it will eventually become a facility for the whole market.
As the Met Office’s provisional figures confirm that 2012 was the UK’s second wettest year on record, business advisory firm, Deloitte says the lack of a flood agreement with government is household insurers’ biggest concern.
Rolls-Royce says it has passed information to the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) relating to concerns about bribery and corruption involving intermediaries in overseas markets. This follows a request for information from the SFO about allegations of malpractice in Indonesia and China. Internal investigations at Rolls-Royce have themselves identified matters of concern in these markets.
The majority of businesses are unable to count the cost of a security breach, suggests new research commissioned by data security firm CipherCloud. According to the survey of over 300 business decision makers in UK companies across financial services, healthcare and government, almost 70% of respondents were unable to estimate the cost of a security breach. This was despite admitting they had concerns about security risks when it comes to putting their information in the cloud.
The first in a series of new nuclear and radioactive contamination exclusion clauses has been published by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA). The LMA’s Nuclear Exclusions Working Party, comprising representatives of both Lloyd’s and the London companies market, has developed six new clauses for treaty reinsurance business and these are available to the market via Lloyd’s Wordings Repository.
Xuber, Xchanging’s newly re-launched insurance software business, has been appointed by Marsh to provide its Brokasure software to more than 1100 users around the world. The 12-year contract will deliver a Saas model to eight Marsh UK business units, with implementation to be phased in over the next 24 months.
Take-up of supply chain insurance products in the UK is low because they do not meet the customer needs, according to a new report from Airmic. The association’s research found a perception among risk managers that dedicated supply chain insurance is too costly to justify, that collecting the relevant risk information is over-complex and there is a lack of clarity over when and under what circumstances policies will pay out.
RSA has appointed Dan Wilkinson as mid-market regions director.
Wilkinson has spent 23 years in insurance broking, most recently as CEO of Willis UK Retail.
Frustration within the insurance industry over the introduction of Solvency II is at an all-time high, according to new research from business and financial adviser Grant Thornton. A majority of the professionals polled now believe that the principles of Solvency II have been ‘ruined’ by its implementation while 89% believe that as currently envisaged it is ‘too complicated’.
After an extremely destructive and busy 2011 severe weather season, the United States’ 2012 tornado season may end as one of the most inactive seasons in history, according to the Storm Prediction Center. Through 26th November, the Storm Prediction Center has counted 885 tornadoes, far below the 26th November average of 1,265 and below the minimum value for November 26th of 920.
Mike Waterfield has been announced as the new British Damage Management
Association (BDMA) chairman, taking over from outgoing chairman, Don
Pringle, on 1st December.
Cabinet Minister Francis Maude today announced government plans to set up a ‘Cyber Reserve’ force to deal with the growing cyber threat. The force will be run by the Ministry of Defence and will allow the armed forces to “draw on the wider talent and skills of the nation in the cyber field.” Maude said that help was needed with “critical” work in combating online crime and promised efforts to make the UK “one of the most secure places in the world to do business in cyber space”.
Ensuring that your business is protected against adverse conditions is one way of illustrating an ability to continue on providing a service whatever the weather, and no less during the current wet weather and associated flooding, says FM Global.
The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) has today launched a new good practice guide to equality and diversity for members, employers and the insurance and financial services professions. The CII’s guidance includes useful tips, case studies and resources to help professionals, particularly those in smaller firms, go beyond the minimum requirements when managing diversity
Marsh has combined its Asia and Pacific regions and appointed a dedicated leader for a new Continental Europe, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and Turkey region.
SunGard Availability Services has today announced the introduction of SunGard Online, an on-demand public cloud computing platform. With this new service users pay only for resources that they use, and the secure online portal allows an autonomous approach to cloud management based on pre-defined packages.
The most likely solution to providing insurance coverage in high-flood risk-areas of the UK is the introduction of a non-profit risk pool, despite the government's recent refusal to provide a temporary overdraft facility to the industry's latest proposal, Fitch Ratings says. The expiry in June 2013 of the government and insurance industry's Statement of Principles (SoP) agreement to provide insurance in high flood-risk areas, while positive for the UK insurance industry, leaves households at risk.
Following the news that negotiations between insurers and MPs have broken down, JLT Speciality Limited today warns that although the Statement of Principles has only ever related to residential and SME business, the change in underwriting policy could well flow into commercial insurance.
As the insurance cost of the recent flooding looks set to reach £1bn, a study by Iron Mountain shows that although 40% of UK firms regard natural disaster as the top threat to information security, few have taken action to protect their data from flood and fire risk. Iron Mountain has prepared a practical checklist to help firms minimise the impact of a natural disaster and protect their important information assets.
Active Risk today announced the global release of ARM 6, which aims to further engage employees in the risk management process, visualise connections between risks, and graphically report risks more effectively. ARM 6 addresses risk management needs at all levels of the business, from individual projects and programmes through to the enterprise level.
For the past seven days, much of the UK has experienced torrential rain resulting in flooding and widespread disruption. As conditions look set to continue, business continuity and managed IT services provider, Phoenix has been on hand to assist many of its 2,000 customers in keeping their business running.
In 2013, insurers will face an unprecedented level of indirect tax changes in Europe, intensifying the challenge of maintaining tax compliance. Says chief executive of FiscalReps, Mike Stalley: “Since the start of the financial crisis we have been warning insurers that European governments would increase their focus on indirect taxation to fund budget shortfalls. Now the promised changes are upon us and in the coming year we will see significant insurance premium tax and parafiscal tax changes right across the continent.
Since Sandy made landfall as a post-tropical cyclone on 29th October 2012, in southern New Jersey, catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide has been analysing the storm’s characteristics and impacts. Informed by the latest available information on surge height and extent from the USGS, surface wind speed observation data, and findings from AIR’s post-disaster survey teams, AIR now estimates that insured losses from Sandy will be between US$16 and 22 billion.
The ABI has called for the government to commit to a joint solution to ensure long term affordable flood insurance for high-risk households, describing the current state of talks aimed at reaching an agreement as being at an impasse. This follows the government’s refusal to consider providing a temporary overdraft facility to a proposed not-for-profit special insurance fund for 200,000 high-risk households which will otherwise struggle to get affordable household insurance when the current arrangements come to an end next year.
Whistleblowers from the UK were responsible for almost one in four overseas tip-offs to the US Securities and Exchange Commission in the last US fiscal year, according to analysis from business advisory Kroll. The SEC made its first payment to a whistleblower under the Dodd-Frank Act in August this year, releasing around US$50,000 to an individual who helped an investigation that resulted in more than US$1m in sanctions. Kroll says that over the last 12 months almost one in five (18%) of its investigations were prompted by a whistleblower. In 60% of these investigations the original allegations were upheld.