Cybercrime the theme of Thoroughly Thurrock event at Orsett Hall

ESSEX Chamber of Commerce members and guests had some tense moments when they met with Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex, Nick Alston CBE, and Caroline Garrow, Associate Director of local insurance broker SEIB, at Thoroughly Thurrock twilight networking event last Monday (5th October). The topic was cyber-crime and Nick Alston CBE was meeting businesses to raise awareness of these type of crimes and educate about the alarming increase in them against businesses. Caroline Garrow provided a sharp contrast with the insurance industry’s view on this crime and how businesses might find themselves under insured if they ever fell victim to cyber-crime.

Nick Alston, Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex told the audience that businesses must take measures to prevent against these crimes being committed because the reality is that they are happening more and more and once the money is gone it is very difficult to recover. Mr Alston CBE said, “The numbers of cyber-crime incidents and internet-enabled fraud cases are increasing and this is a real concern. Essex Police is taking this seriously, but it is difficult for police to prevent all of these crimes.

So we need businesses to be careful and take reasonable precautions. Firstly, by looking at the technology and having sensible levels of IT security. Secondly, by making your staff aware of internet fraud and particularly to ensure they really know who they are communicating with by phone or the internet.”

For more help and guidance Nick Alston pointed businesses towards the Government 10 step guide to cyber security at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cyber-risk-management-a-board-level-responsibility

Caroline added her own expertise from the insurance industry with anecdotes from customers who had experienced breaches in their security and the misconceptions by businesses on what their current business interruption policy may cover saying,

“People are curious so even with policy and procedures in place they may click on that link. What then for your business? Standard Business Interruption Cover only responds following physical damage and therefore businesses should invest in explicit cover for losses arising from cyber enabled crime.”

Whilst much of the insurance industry has been slow, like businesses, to realise the dangers of cyber-crime SEIB are leading the way to help businesses protect themselves from financial costs arising from cyber-crime with specific policies to both protect and give business advice to customers.

At the end of the presentation there were a lot of raised eyebrows and many questions, with all agreeing that the speakers had been both interesting and informative albeit that the information was quite concerning.

A more light hearted Thoroughly Thurrock returns to Orsett Hall in December when we welcome Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines to discuss both the history of this shipping line and their increasing business through Thurrock and the impact of this for local businesses’ and the supply chain. For more information visit www.thoroughlythurrock.co.uk

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