Insurers creating ratings service for cybersecurity firms

    Some of the world’s biggest insurers plan to work together on an assessment of the best cybersecurity defenses available to businesses, an unusual collaboration that highlights the rising dangers posed by digital hackers.

    The program, as The Wall Street Journal reports, is being launched Tuesday by the Marsh brokerage unit of Marsh & McLennan Co. and will evaluate cybersecurity software and technology sold to businesses. Marsh will collate scores from participating insurers, which will individually size up the offerings, and identify the products and services considered effective in reducing cyber risk. The results will be available to the public on Marsh’s U.S. website.

    Corporate policyholders that use the designated offerings may qualify for improved terms and conditions on policies negotiated individually with participating insurers, Marsh said. Insurers that have agreed to participate include Allianz SE , AXA SA, Axis Capital Holdings Ltd., Beazley PLC, CFC Underwriting Ltd., Munich Re, Sompo International and Zurich Insurance Group AG.

    Such collaboration across the insurance industry is unusual but not unprecedented. In the 1950s, three insurance associations teamed to create the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing deaths, injuries and property damage from motor-vehicle crashes.

    Many insurers see the burgeoning cyber-risk market as a rare growth opportunity when many other insurance lines are growing sluggishly. Read the full story.

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