Recent data breaches in the healthcare industry are alarming. The fact that there is a shortage of qualified cybersecurity professionals is troubling.
Plan sponsors: how are you protecting your plan?
Cybercrime is real. The expertise to confront it is in scarce supply. Threatpost reports:
Increasing exposure, ferocious growth in cybercrime numbers and a lack of qualified cybersecurity professionals to combat rising threats has created a critical shortage of manpower in the cyber-defense sector.
Legal experts advise plan sponsors to ensure that the best available current practices are being applied to retirement account security. This includes advising plan participants to be vigilant. JD Supra offers this guidance:
Address cybersecurity and data breach protection. With remote working and increased reliance on personal devices for work functions, coupled with increased plan-related participant activity (for example, increased requests for Cares Act distributions and 401(k) loans by participants) potentially exposing retirement plan accounts and personal information (Social Security numbers, etc.), the risk of data breach and fraud activity is substantially increased. Although there currently is no specific guidance from the Department of Labor or IRS on plan cybersecurity, employers should consult with their plan recordkeepers to confirm that best practices are being applied to retirement account security, similar to protections in the financial services and health care industries. Also, encourage participants to regularly monitor their plan accounts for questionable transactions and frequently change their passwords. This is an area to watch for future guidance.
Take Action: Secure Expert Assistance
An immediate action that plan sponsors can take is to add Colonial Surety Company’s Cyber Liability insurance coverage to the required ERISA bond coverage for retirement plans.
With Cyber Liability insurance from Colonial Surety Company, plan sponsors are supported with services from forensic, legal, technology and customer care experts. In the event of a data breach, you will receive:
- Breach resolution and mitigation services
- Computer expert services
- Legal services
- Public relations and crisis management expenses
- Customer notification and call center services.
Colonial’s affordable ERISA bond packages include Cyber Liability insurance to safeguard your company and plan against a loss due to cyber attack — plus extended coverage to ensure your ERISA bond remains US Department of Labor compliant. When you choose your package, don’t forget to include Fiduciary Liability insurance to protect yourself from covered acts as the plan sponsor.
Think Ahead: Invest In Building Expertise
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has named cybersecurity as a promising field for business start-ups and expansion. The need is great, and the current availability of trained professionals lags. Investing in capacity is critical, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce:
With so many more people working from home during the pandemic, IT has been a struggle for companies. As such, businesses have invested in cybersecurity solutions to help protect company computers, phones and data that are being used all over the country instead of in corporate offices. With some companies telling workers they can remain remote after the pandemic, the need for cybersecurity will remain.
It is important for plan sponsors to take a comprehensive approach to protecting retirement plans. Colonial Surety Company, a leading provider of ERISA bonds and Fiduciary Liability Insurance, helps plan sponsors by offering an innovative, comprehensive, service-based solution. As an ERISA Fidelity Bond expert, Colonial can help you comply with regulations and further protect your plan—and yourself in these extra challenging times.
Colonial Surety Company is a direct to consumer, digital insurance provider, serving all 50 states and U.S. Territories. Colonial’s I-Bonds® are available for instant quote, and purchase. Then, print or e-file on your desktop or mobile device. It’s that simple! Choose your ERISA Bond Package Today!