Ambulance Board considers cyber insurance

With frequent reports of hackers gaining access to confidential data — including regional grocery chain Schnucks in recent months — the Callaway County Ambulance District is considering options to protect itself in case its systems were to be hacked.

Rick Naught and Tammy Wickham with Naught Naught Insurance Agency spoke to the CCAD Board of Directors at its regular meeting Tuesday night about the potential benefits of a cyber liability policy.

“We have this coverage because we store social security numbers for our clients,” Wickham said, noting the insurance industry is changing to meet the growing threat of cyber data theft. “No matter how secure the fire wall is, it’s still a risk. Information is out there to be had, and we want to protect you in case someone gets it.”

She said many cyber liability policies cover things like the cost to notify customers if there has been a potential security breach, or the cost to offer identity theft protection to affected customers as required by law.

Other potential benefits would be coverage of repair and recovery costs in the case of a server loss.

Ambulance board member Mike Groves asked what the worst-case scenario would be for the ambulance district that would result in needing this kind of coverage.

“Say if a laptop out of one of the ambulances gets stolen, even though the information is encrypted, they could potentially have access to our patient database,” CCAD Director Charlie Anderson responded, noting that would affect 10,000-15,000 patients. “All of that data is potentially exposed, and we would have to notify them of the potential breach and offer identity fraud protection.

“Those are the kinds of things that, without this policy, we would be writing a check. So there is some value to this.”

The board agreed to authorize Wickham to solicit quotes for cyber liability coverage for the district.

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