3 June 2022

What are the practicalities of cyber insurance for the notary public?

In our October 2021 newsletter asked; ‘Why Do You Need A Specialist Cyber Insurance Policy?

The reasons are numerous and might include protection for you and your practice against claims and costs arising from, inter alia Cyber Liability (e.g. associated with a data breach), Notification Costs, Fines & Penalties where insurable at law or your costs following a Hacking Attack, to name a few examples.

There are differing Insurer approaches to Cyber Insurance that lead to a variety of premiums, policy coverage and warranties (see below). We have selected a product that we believe is suitable for Notaries and we would be happy to provide you with a quotation accordingly.

However, please do be aware that all Cyber insurance policies will contain warranties, which must be adhered to if the policy is to operate. A warranty in an insurance policy is a promise by the insured party that statements affecting the validity of the contract are true.

So, what warranties might be found within the Cyber Insurance policy offered to the Notary Public by MFL Professions?

Operational commercial grade firewall and anti-virus protection must be in place.

Critical data must be backed up at least every 7 days, by you or your cloud provider.

Where claims might arise under the’ PCI Fines & Assessments Costs’ section of the policy, you must be compliant with the relevant Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard.

To assist with the first of the above warranties, i.e. ‘commercial grade firewall and anti-virus protection’, the Insurer on this particular facility does offer with their policy, free of charge, a number of licenses by which you as an Insured can upgrade your system to meet this requirement (see below for more detail) if indeed it is not already met.

A number of other questions might spring to mind around these warranties and here we consider a few of the more common scenarios:

Many Notaries tend to be sole practitioners and by the very nature of the work undertaken much of it is paper based. We know many will utilise an online storage facility called NotarySafe, which is specifically built for notaries, in order to hold documents; are Insurers happy with this?

Provided that NotarySafe will automatically back up to the cloud then this is fine, Insurers would be satisfied with this.

Some practitioners will use IT products which have their own virus protection built in. Is this sufficient?

The answer here is ‘no’, the Insurers require antivirus and firewalls software to be designed for business use. If the software has “Personal” or “Home Edition” (or similar phrases) in its description or name it is not commercial grade. The software should have “Business”, “Commercial” or “Corporate” (or similar phrases) in its description or name to be classified as commercial grade.

My system will automatically back up to the cloud – is this sufficient?

(e.g. as per above where used in conjunction with the NotarySafe platform) this is sufficient as Insurers simply require data to be backed up, they don’t specify a particular solution for this.

In summary, please note that all security requirements in respect of antivirus, firewalls and backups are applicable to whatever system might be used, whoever the manufacturer.

Free Security Solution With Cyber Policy

The Cyber policy we can offer you as a Notary incorporates the option of a commercial grade security solution without additional cost.  If your system does not have this virus protection or appropriate back-ups, Insurers would require you to install their offered security solution. Please note:-

Supported devices are: Windows PCs, Windows 7 SP1 or higher (32-bit, 64-bit), Windows 8/8.1, except RT & Starter edition (32-bit, 64-bit), Windows 10, except Mobile & IoT core edition (32-bit, 64-bit).

We can consider other Cyber Insurance products/Insurers though all warranties will differ, hence where possible and to enable as practical a solution as is possible we shall initially consider offering you a quotation under the ‘Cyber Plus’ product detailed here, full details of which can be provided at the quotation stage.