American Property Casualty Insurance Association
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Jeffrey Brewer







January 28, 2014

Data Privacy Day; PCI Offers Tips on How to Avoid becoming a Victim of Cybercrime 

CHICAGO- In spite of sophisticated defenses, several large retailers across the nation recently fell victim to cyber attacks, victimizing both the stores and their customers whose personal information was compromised.

The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) is one of many organizations across the world that’s recognizing today as Data Privacy Day. This event commemorates the signing of Convention 108, the first legally binding international treaty focusing on privacy and data protection. It’s also an opportunity to remind all internet users to be cautious online. PCI offers internet users tips to protect yourself from becoming a victim of a cybercrime.

“Every time you go online, you could potentially become a victim of cybercrime,” said David Golden, PCI’s senior director, commercial lines policy. “Just as you protect yourself from pickpockets through vigilance and keeping your wallet safe, you want to be vigilant online and keep your cyber wallet safe.”

“PCI reminds all internet users to remain on guard anytime you’re online. Consider speaking with your insurance agent or broker about cyber security insurance, to see if this is something that you want to add to your insurance program, whether you operate a business or seek to protect your family finances. We operate in a digital world, with more and more personal information shared each day. It’s important to protect yourself against these potential threats,” said Golden.

Online Safety Tips for Businesses 

1.)   Put appropriate security measures in place to protect your customers’ personal information.


2.)   Have appropriate security software or firewalls to prevent someone from hacking into your site and taking the website down.


3.)   Test e-commerce mechanisms all the way through the purchasing process. Make sure everything is secure to protect both your business and the customer.

4.)   Confirm with any third party vendors, that they also have the proper security measures in place, and are running a secure website.

5.)   Speak to your corporate legal counsel and insurance agent/broker about the best ways to keep your business protected and reduce liability exposures, as cyber criminals increase their sophistication.

Online Safety Tips for Shoppers and Internet Users

1.)   Confirm that the website is legitimate; before you give out personal information, look for “https” in the URL and the padlock icon that indicates that the site is secure.

2.)   When filling out personal information on the site, be especially careful about giving out your social security number or financial information; check the privacy policy and ask yourself if the site needs that information.

3.)   Use a credit card when paying for something, rather than a debit card that directly accesses your bank account. Credit cards usually have a limit on how much you can be charged if someone fraudulently uses your card number. Review your statements, to see if there are any unauthorized charges. If there is a discrepancy, report it immediately.

4.)   Install quality Internet security software and keep all programs up to date as software companies address vulnerabilities.

For more online safety tips visit the National Cyber Security Alliance.

PCI is composed of more than 1,000 member companies, representing the broadest cross-section of insurers of any national trade association. PCI members write over $195 billion in annual premium, 39 percent of the nation’s property casualty insurance. Member companies write 46 percent of the U.S. automobile insurance market, 32 percent of the homeowners market, 37 percent of the commercial property and liability market, and 41 percent of the private workers compensation market.