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Cybersecurity insurance breaks coming for Apple, Cisco customers

Apple and Cisco customers could get lucrative terms for cybersecurity insurance under a new partnership with insurance giant Allianz and global services firm Aon.

Apple and Cisco customers may soon be able to get lucrative terms for cybersecurity insurance.

Insurance giant Allianz joined forces with the two technology giants, along with professional services firm Aon, for a cybersecurity insurance partnership. Allianz, through its Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty subsidiary, is underwriting "enhanced cyber insurance" for customers using Cisco and/or Apple products. Enhancements include "market-leading policy coverage terms and conditions, including potentially qualifying for lower, or even no, deductibles in certain cases," according to the joint announcement from the four companies.

Companies using Apple hardware, Cisco Ransomware Defense -- or both -- may qualify for the policy benefits and discounts for their Allianz coverage, depending on the state of their defenses. Prospective customers will be able to use Aon's Cyber Resilience Evaluation tool to evaluate their cybersecurity posture and qualify for the cybersecurity insurance offers, as well as to get recommendations for improving their overall cybersecurity defenses.

According to the announcement, Allianz said it evaluated the "technical foundation" of both Apple's products and Cisco's Ransomware Defense and determined the two technology giants afforded customers "a superior level of security." Jawahar Sivasankaran, director of Cisco Security, told SearchSecurity that Cisco's Ransomware Defense tool offers protection through an integrated architecture approach backed by research and threat intelligence from Cisco's Talos team. "This includes the individual solutions that make up ransomware defense -- email security, endpoint security and cloud-based threat protection," Sivasankaran said.

While so far there are no indications that the initiative announced by Cisco, Apple, Aon and Allianz will add other vendors, it is a clear signal that the old ways of selling cyberinsurance are changing.

The traditional cybersecurity enterprise sales reps will begin selling cyberinsurance directly to CISOs, in which both sides have a much better handle on the subject matter.
Jeremiah Grossmanchief of security strategy, SentinelOne

"Currently, cyberinsurance is typically sold by existing insurance brokers, who largely do not have a background in cybersecurity. And the buyers of business insurance tends to be CFOs or the finance [or] legal department, who again largely do not have cybersecurity backgrounds," Jeremiah Grossman, chief of security strategy at SentinelOne, told SearchSecurity. "This scenario makes it difficult for the business to get the exact right coverage. What we'll begin seeing is a change in mechanically how cyberinsurance is sold. The traditional cybersecurity enterprise sales reps will begin selling cyberinsurance directly to CISOs, in which both sides have a much better handle on the subject matter."

In addition to cybersecurity insurance coverage, the partnership will also offer incident response services from both Cisco and Aon's incident response teams. Sivasankaran said Cisco's incident response service is also backed by research from the Talos team and provides threat assessments, tabletop exercises and threat hunting workshops.

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