Plan Sponsors Specifically Threatened by Cyber Attacks


Retirement plans and, specifically, their plan sponsors are being threatened more and more by cyber attacks.

Recordkeepers, custodians, and third party administrators are used to being attacked due to all the valuable personal data they harbor and have implemented measures to guard against cyber attacks. Plan sponsors, however, don’t have the cybersecurity experience of those used to having their data threatened. That makes them vulnerable and an increasingly large target for cyber attackers.

More troubling is the fact that Callan’s 2019 Defined Contribution Trends Report finds that plan sponsors aren’t treating the threat as seriously as they should. It doesn’t seem to be a top priority for plan sponsors even as cyber attacks increase exponentially in the world around us.

Cyber attacks can come in forms ranging from phishing emails to malware to password theft to DDoS attacks. And that’s just today; there may be even more substantial threats in the world in no time with how quickly the tech world is growing around us. Plan sponsors have to pay attention and do what they can to protect their retirement plans. Click here to learn more about how plan sponsors in particular are at risk to cyber attack.

Strengthening plan defenses is one way to guard against cyber attacks, but with attackers becoming more and more sophisticated, there is only so much you can do to prevent an attack on your data. If an attacker wants your data bad enough, they will find a way in. There is one way to protect plan participants against any potential loss, however: cyber liability insurance.

Where can I easily purchase cyber liability insurance to protect my retirement plan?

Colonial Surety offers an included cyber liability insurance endorsement for our ERISA fidelity bond packages with fiduciary liability insurance to best protect your plan against a cyber attack.

Colonial’s cyber insurance provides a services-based solution to help plan sponsors manage data breaches successfully. These services include a dedicated team of cyber breach professionals who assist plan sponsors at every stage of incident investigation and breach response. These professionals coordinate the carefully vetted forensics experts and specialized lawyers to help plan sponsors establish what’s been compromised; assess plan sponsor responsibility; and, notify those individuals affected. In addition, these services will also coordinate credit or identity monitoring, and PR advice to help the plan sponsor safeguard its reputation. Of course, Colonial’s cyber insurance also indemnifies and defends plan sponsors from covered lawsuits or regulatory actions, the risk of which may be reduced by a well-coordinated breach response, but can never be completely eliminated.

Ongoing governance and evaluation of recordkeepers can help protect data, but the only way to fully protect against a potential cyber attack’s data breach is to purchase cyber liability insurance from Colonial Surety Company.