Below is an abstract from the I.I.I. database citing a Wall Street Journal article from October 8, 2001. It describes the sharp increase in insurance rates immediately following the terrorist attacks of 9/11 2001.
The abstract is part of our series covering the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (TRIA). The act made public and private sharing of insured losses from acts of terrorism in the United States possible.
By Loretta Worters, Vice President, Media Relations, Insurance Information Institute
Despite a never-ending cycle of cyber breach headlines, individuals continue to be underprepared for even the most common cyber exposures. According to Chubb’s third annual Cyber Risk Survey, which examined individuals’ comprehension of cyberrisk and the steps they are taking to protect themselves, complacency seems to have taken hold: eight-in-10 Americans continue to be concerned about a cyber breach, yet only 41 percent use cybersecurity software and only 31 percent regularly change their passwords. These numbers are virtually unchanged from 2018.
According to Chubb’s survey, individuals don’t recognize the value of individual pieces of personal data. For example, just 18 percent of respondents are concerned about their email addresses being compromised. Similarly, only 27 percent of respondents cite concern about their medical records being breached.
The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which analyzed passwords belonging to accounts worldwide that had been breached bares the Chubb survey out. The NCSC notes that several combinations of numbers made up the top 10, while “blink182” was the most popular musical artist and “superman” the most common fictional character. But “123456” was the most common password, with 23.2 million accounts using the easy-to-decipher code. “123456789” was used by 7.7 million, while “qwerty” and “password” were each used by more than 3 million accounts.
Chubb survey results indicate that a consistently large portion of older respondents employ better cyber practices than younger generations. Per the survey, 77 percent of those 55 years and older delete suspicious emails, compared to half (55 percent) of respondents between 35 to 54 and just a third (36 percent) of respondents from 18 to 34. Similar patterns arise when looking at those enrolled in cybersecurity monitoring services, where 53 percent of respondents over 55 are enrolled in a cybersecurity monitoring service. But this same service is used by only 1 percent of respondents between 35 to 54 and just 29 percent between 18 and 34.
More concerning is that the behavior of younger generations appears to be getting worse, the Chubb report noted. For example, 76 percent and 74 percent of adults over 55 regularly deleted suspicious emails in 2017 and 2018, respectively, as compared to just 47 percent and 40 percent of adults between 18 and 34 during the same time period.
In most narratives, it’s the younger generation teaching older generations about the latest internet trends. When it comes to cyber safety, however, it’s clear that the tables have turned. The first lesson older generations should impart? The importance of talking with an independent agent and broker about coverage for a cyber-related incident.
Without it, and in the event of a hack or breach which leads to a financial loss, individuals could be left without a safety net in place. In some cases, policies will also cover incident response expenses, including legal services, reputation management, and mental and emotional pain diagnosed by a physician.
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, (NCSAM), a collaborative effort between government and industry to raise awareness about the importance of cybersecurity and to ensure that all Americans have the resources they need to be safer and more secure online. This year’s NCSAM will emphasize personal accountability and stress the importance of taking proactive steps to enhance cybersecurity at home and in the workplace. This year’s overarching message – Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT. – will focus on key areas including citizen privacy, consumer devices, and ecommerce security.
As part of our series of profiles of insurance professionals, we interviewed Darla Finchum, Head of MetLife Auto & Home. She is responsible for growth and management of the company’s personal and small commercial lines, as well as transforming the business to meet the needs of today’s technology-focused consumers. Finchum is also an active member of MetLife’s U.S. Business Diversity & Inclusion Task Force.
I.I.I.: Please tell us a little about your professional background. How did you end up working in insurance and what has your career trajectory been like at MetLife?
Darla Finchum: I’ve spent my career in personal insurance in the property and casualty industry. I started right out of college in the claims organization of an insurance carrier. Claims is where we put people’s lives back together in some of the most devastating moments. I developed a passion for what insurance does for people and for society. It is such a noble profession.
Once I knew that I had a passion and intellectual curiosity for insurance and what the industry stood for, I sought out roles and opportunities in various parts of the insurance business—from underwriting to sales to operations to services. I really began to understand the customer, the back end and front end, the business operations, and why it’s important for us to be a partner in the lifetime of our customers.
I came to MetLife Auto & Home through an acquisition in 2000 and have held various leadership roles including chief claims officer, prior to my current role as head of the business. It’s a real privilege to lead MetLife Auto & Home, drive our business growth and ultimately be there for our customers.
In your early career, has there been a mentor or boss who particularly encouraged and inspired you? If so, is there anything they said or did that you still draw on in your role as leader?
DF: I have been fortunate to meet, connect, and build mentor relationships with many individuals in both my professional and personal lives. My network and group of trusted advisors include former bosses, colleagues both inside and outside my organization, as well as individuals I’ve connected with outside of work, people I have met in life. I believe it’s essential to have a network you can call on, who will tell you what you need to hear and be there in pivotal moments to help in making those big decisions.
Most organizations agree that a diverse workforce is a good thing. Sometimes overshadowed by discussions about diversity is the topic of inclusion. One HR consultant described diversity as the “who” and inclusion as the “how”. How is MetLife promoting inclusion?
DF: MetLife has developed initiatives designed to strengthen an inclusive work environment. Designed in collaboration with human resources partners, business leaders, and external resources, the initiatives focus on three pillars: Attraction, Development/Advancement, and Retention. We define inclusion as a commitment to recognizing and appreciating the variety of characteristics that make individuals unique in an atmosphere that promotes and celebrates individual and collective achievement aligned to our values. We promote a culture where we respect others and listen for both facts and feelings to show respect for others’ perspectives. We focus on commonalities and value differences by identifying areas of agreement and shared goals.
Diversity, inclusion, and associate engagement are top priorities for me as a leader. Our Enterprise Local Inclusion Action Teams and Americas U.S. Diversity Task Force are two programs I’m involved in to promote and create inclusion across MetLife. Understanding employee values not only supports and helps them to thrive; it also has a positive impact on the business. Being involved in these enterprise teams gives me the opportunity to implement best practices across the broader organization, starting at the top with my senior leadership team.
How does MetLife go about recruiting employees from non-insurance backgrounds?
DF: It’s important for businesses to have look outside their industry to not only hire people with great experience but also individuals with intellectual curiosity, an ownership mindset, and who are willing to challenge the status quo, take risks, and experiment. MetLife leverages our recruitment marketing platform to promote jobs on our career site and various diverse job boards. In addition to job boards, our recruitment teams leverage several tools and channels to meet prospective candidates where they are and promote our employer brand, such as social media, Glassdoor, Indeed, job fairs, AI tools, community-based organizations, and employee referrals. MetLife is focused on targeting candidates who align with our core behaviors and values from a variety of industries.
What steps is MetLife taking/has taken to build a consumer-centric culture?
DF: Today’s consumers are aware of what’s possible and expect to engage with businesses on their own terms and in their preferred channels. At MetLife Auto & Home, we are focused on putting the customer at the center of our business to ensure we are delivering products and coverage our customers need, as well as quality service and experience they want.
We provide a personalized experience in which our customers can engage with us whenever, wherever, and however they chose. Whether that’s over the phone, through our website and apps, or in-person, we are a trusted advisor ensuring we provide the right types of guidance and advice to our customers.
In today’s world of emerging technologies, it’s important to have a balance of leveraging the latest technology like artificial intelligence, aerial imagery, and drones with the human connection. While digitalization and speed are core to today’s customer experience, the human connection is important in insurance. Immediately after an auto accident a customer may want to speak with a person at their carrier to verbally explain what happen, ask questions, and receive reassurance the claim will be handled. Once the initial claim has been submitted, a customer may choose to only receive updates via email and/or the app as they have the confidence in us that the claim will be properly handled.
And finally – What are you passionate about outside of work?
DF: While I’m passionate about insurance and my career, I’m just as (if not more!) passionate about my family – I strive for work-life balance. Whether it’s watching my grandson play baseball, a girl’s trip with my daughters or our annual family vacations, spending time with my family is a top priority and joy of my life. The balance of work and life is something I encourage for all our associates to make a priority. I remind them they can have it all, but they can’t do it all, so surround yourself with people who will help you along the way.
Electronic cigarettes have been marketed as a healthier alternative to smoking tobacco, but a recent outbreak of lung disease linked to e-cigarettes shows that smoking is unsafe in any form, and insurers are cautioned to review their books of business for exposures to e-cigarettes.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has reported 12 deaths and 805 cases of lung injury linked to e-cigarettes (or vaping) as of this week. Of the 373 cases where data on the patients was available, about three-quarters were male, two-thirds were 18 years to 34 years old and 16 percent were younger than 18 years
The cause of the illnesses has not been linked to any specific ingredients or devices. And while health officials continue to investigate, people are cautioned to refrain from using e-cigarettes altogether, and particularly to stay away from vaping liquids or devices sold on the street.
And if the outbreak of lung disease is not bad enough, e-cigarette batteries have been known to explode, causing serious injuries and a few deaths. A study from George Mason University estimated there were more than 2,000 visits to U.S. emergency rooms from 2015 to 2017 for e-cigarette burns and explosion-related injuries.
In a recent blog post, Tim Fletcher, Senior Emerging Issues Specialist at Gen Re suggests that in response to the situation insurers should review their small commercial retail book to determine whether any are selling e-cigarettes. Such retailers could include convenience stores, gas stations, and liquor stores. The blog lists several forms and ISO exclusions for e-cigarettes.
The Gen Re blogger reminds insurers that the duty to defend exists in all standard CGL occurrence forms with the potential to incur uncapped defense costs.
On September 19 Advisen hosted its second annual Big, Nasty Claims Conference at the New York Law School. The discussion focused on the issues that are driving mass torts and class actions that have the potential to exceed $100 million.
In her opening remarks, Ellen Greiper, partner with Lewis Brisbois, said that seven to nine figure verdicts are becoming common, a statement echoed by many of the panelists. And in his keynote address, Sherman “Tiger” Joyce, president of the American Tort Reform Association cited the trend of courts becoming a vehicle for public change that started with the tobacco litigation in the 1990s and continues through today’s opioids liability litigation. He also noted that the sheer “critical mass” of claimants is driving astronomical verdicts, for example the Xarelto® blood thinner lawsuit had 25,000 claimants and resulted in a $775 million verdict.
He mentioned speaking with an insurer who was ready to settle an older, expired claim for $150,000. Then legislation came through, changing the statute of limitations – and the claim demand changed to $50 million. “It’s not going to stop here. It’s never a one-off when it comes to this type of activity. Toxic torts, there are any number of events this will migrate to. Be on the alert for the exposure,” he warned the audience. “It’s gotten to the point where it’s just exploding.”
Joyce also cited liberal expert evidence rules, and the bending of personal jurisdiction rules, especially in so-called judicial hellholes, leading the way to more and bigger casualty losses.
Jim Blinn, executive vice president, Client Solutions, Advisen and Jesse Paulson, managing director, U.S. Excess Casualty Leader, Marsh, led the session dealing with frequency and severity trends for losses larger than $100 million, including a growing number of verdicts that breach the $1 billion threshold. The audience got a glimpse into Advisen’s proprietary excess casualty loss database via a slide listing recent colossal verdicts. Topping the list were Monsanto’s Roundup, Johnson & Johnson’s Pinnacle hip replacements and opioids and PG&E’s Camp Fire related losses.
In a session dealing with the insurance industry’s response to large claims Kathy Reid, senior vice president of Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance said that the more information the insurer has about a client the better — uncertainty causes price to increase. She said that while this is not the best time for insurers to come into the market some middle market casualty business can still be profitable.
So what types of Big Nasty Claims keep insurance executives up at night? Paul DeGiulio, senior vice president of General Casualty and Health Care Claims, Allied World, cited incidents causing multiple claims such as train wrecks or industrial explosions. Aging infrastructure and commercial auto (with rising fatalities on the road) are also areas of concern. And in premises liability, more businesses are being held liable when customers fall victim to crime in parking lots and garages.
By Brent Carris, Research Assistant, Insurance Information Institute
The Wharton Risk Center and the Insurance Information Institute co-sponsored the second annual Hack-for-Resilience at PennApps XX, the nation’s oldest and largest student-run college hackathon. Presentations were given by Carolyn Kousky and Brett Lingle of the Wharton Risk Center School; and the I.I.I.’s James Ballot.
From September 6 – 8, 18 student teams used software and hardware technologies to “hack”—conceive and build new apps and devices—ways to combat the risks posed by natural disasters, such as hurricanes, wildfires, and floods. The students also vied to create either a product or service that provided insurance in a customer-friendly manner, a category generally known as Insurtech.
A panel of judges from the I.I.I. and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center selected the winners.
First place in the Insurtech category was Wildfire Protect– a parametric wildfire insurance product designed to provide immediate payouts to insureds that experience property damage from wildfire.
Second place was a tie between Prophet Profit and Navig8. Prophet Profit is an app designed to help households save money by allocating funds in all sectors of the stock market. The Navig8 team created an app to assist the visually impaired communicate during a disaster.
First place in the resilience category was awarded to a hack called Phoenix. This team created an autonomous drone which detects and extinguishes fires.
On September 11, 2001 terrorists hijacked commercial airliners and flew them into the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon. The attacks remain the deadliest and most expensive terrorist incidents in U.S. history, with insurance losses totaling about $47.0 billion in 2019 dollars, according to I.I.I. estimates.
In the wake of the attacks the U.S. Congress enacted the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (TRIA). The act creating a federal backstop for catastrophic terrorism losses that is designed to keep terrorism risk insurance available and affordable. It was renewed in 2005, 2007 and again in 2015. The act is set to expire on December 31, 2020.
Over the next months the Triple-I Blog will run stories featuring key participants in the terrorism risk insurance market and highlight news stories from our database from the periods immediately following 9/11 (before TRIA) and 2015 (when TRIA briefly lapsed).
Below is an abstract from the I.I.I. database citing a BestWeek article from October 1, 2001. The article refers to the fact that the heaviest insured losses were absorbed by foreign and domestic reinsurers, the insurers of insurance companies. Because of the lack of public data on, or modeling of, the scope and nature of the terrorism risk, reinsurers felt unable to accurately price for such risks and largely withdrew from the market for terrorism risk insurance in the months following September 11, 2001