Cyber Extortion is a crime involving an attack or the threat of an attack against a business which includes a demand for money to avoid or stop the attack. This can take many forms running the gamut from a denial of service attack to encrypting the insured’s data and holding it hostage. This component offers coverage for extortion expenses incurred and extortion monies paid as a direct result of a credible cyber extortion threat.
The manager at a popular tavern downloaded an e-mail attachment that appeared to be from his bookkeeper. The attachment contained ransomware which, when downloaded, immediately encrypted files on the manager’s computer, including accounting and payroll records. When the manager tried to access a file, a message appeared on the computer screen directing him to pay a ransom in Bitcoin in order to receive a decryption key.
With the help of an IT expert and legal counsel, the threat was determined to be credible, and the ransom was paid. The ransom, IT fees and legal expenses, totaling $10,000, were covered under the tavern’s Cyber Extortion insurance.