How does the BDSLCCI Cybersecurity Framework help small and medium businesses or startups with the pre-requisite of cyber insurance?

An insurance product called a "cyber insurance policy" is made to shield a company against the hazards involved in utilizing the Internet and in storing and processing data electronically. It is also known as Cyber liability insurance or cybersecurity insurance. The market for cyber insurance is growing quickly as a result of the increased digital transformation and the growing severity of ransomware and other intrusions.

The Business Domain Specific Least Cybersecurity Controls Implementation (BDSLCCI) Framework is complying with the with the maximum pre-requisites of cyber insurance, especially for micro, small, and medium enterprises known as SMEs, SMBs, MSMEs, or startup companies.

This article will help understand different areas of cyber insurance and how the BDSLCCI cybersecurity framework will help reduce the cost of insurance by proving good coverage of cyber security controls.

Principal Causes for Needing Cyber Insurance for Your Company?

The fast advancement of digital technology and the complexity of IT infrastructures have been matched by a marked rise in cybercrimes. Cyberattacks can result in a number of negative outcomes, including server shutdowns, a decline in customer confidence in the business, and a loss of revenue. Significant fines may also result from data breaches. For digital businesses, protection against the dangers of cyberattacks and cybercriminals is essential. Considering that not all security threats can be reduced by technology, purchasing cyber insurance might be a wise risk management strategy.

  • It is a Client Requirement: The customer is always right! If it is a requirement by valuable client willing to assign project work to your company needs cyber insurance, your organization will go ahead with the same.
  • Reputation of Business: An online fraud can destroy the assets and reputation of your business. Because tech businesses gather and retain a lot of sensitive data, they are more susceptible to cybercrimes. A company may need to hire a public relations firm or take other steps to repair its brand following an attack. Some cyber policies will help defray these costs.
  • Coverage for Damages: Professional liability insurance and normal errors and omissions policies sometimes do not cover damages resulting from cybercrimes.
  • Business interruptions: Cyber policies may partially or completely reimburse a corporation for lost profits resulting from a cyberattack that knocks computer systems offline.
  • Threat response and remediation: After a cyber occurrence, insurance may cover incident response, system maintenance, forensic examinations, and other required services.
  • Legal costs: Cyber insurance may assist in covering the cost of lawsuits brought about by a cyberattack, including those brought by clients. Legal counsel for the insured company may be provided by certain insurance providers.
  • Data breach recovery: Cyber policies can assist in defraying the expenses of alerting clients and offering services like credit monitoring when hackers steal personally identifiable information (PII) or other sensitive data, such as credit card or social security numbers.
  • Regulation: Cyberattacks have the potential to trigger regulatory inquiries, particularly in heavily regulated industries like finance and healthcare. Cyber policies could compensate for the expenses incurred by the business in adhering to these audits, including any fines.
  • Ransom payments: Although many cyber policies cover ransomware payments, due to the high cost of ransomware, some insurance providers are terminating or restricting this coverage.

What do most Cyber Insurance products cover?

Depending on different cyber insurance products, different coverage is offered by the same.

  • Data Administrative Fines: Fines and penalties that are insurable that are owed to a government agency, regulator, or data protection body in the event that data protection laws or regulations are broken.
  • Data Breach: Improper or incorrect denial of data access by a third party with authorization. data exposure is a result of a security breech. the loss, alteration, corruption, damage, or erasure of data kept on any computer system as a result of a data security breach.
  • Data Liability:: Cover the costs of defense and damages in the event that a breach of personal or company data occurs.
  • Theft: Theft of an access code from the business, staff, or computer system; as well as outright hardware theft.
  • Repair of the company's and individual's reputation: Payment of expenses spent as a result of reputational harm resulting from a claim covered by this policy.
  • Data Security: Damage from any duty breach that results in: Third Party Data Contamination by Malicious Code.
  • Data Administrative Investigation: Covers the price of legal counsel and representation in relation to a formal investigation by a regulator, such as the Data Protection Authority.
  • Notification and Monitoring Costs: Covers the data user's costs and expenses for the legally obligatory disclosure to the data subjects.

Which factors determine the cost of cyber insurance products?

The cost of the cyber insurance coverage will be influenced by the following variables:

  • The quantity and kind of cyberthreats.
  • Total amount covered.
  • Outcomes of the risk analysis.
  • The company's past as well as the client dossier.
  • It may take a while to become eligible for and complete a cyber insurance coverage contract. The most challenging aspect for cyber insurers would be accurately determining the worth of stolen data.

How can your business obtain the most coverage and lower my cyber insurance costs?

Organizations with inadequate security procedures are viewed by cyber insurers as an unwelcome and possibly hazardous risk to their business model. Increasing your cyber defenses will increase both your chances of being approved for cyber insurance and your ability to negotiate the best possible rates. Here are some recommended methods to increase your chances of being approved for quality cyber insurance:

  • Make a list of every data asset you have. Verify your ability to audit incident and event logs.
  • Determine which hardware and applications have access to vital resources.
  • Apply privileged access management (PAM) to all privileged access in order to monitor, audit, and control. Cyber insurers recognize that PAM is one of the best defenses against insider threats in addition to providing protection against external attacks.
  • Make use of two-factor authentication.
  • Keep an eye on how devices, ports, and network protocols are being used.
  • Set up and maintain security protocols for routers and firewalls. Stop any unsanctioned traffic.
  • Fixing vulnerabilities should be prioritized using a vulnerability management plan.
  • Update operating systems and programs on a regular basis.
  • Make regular backups and confirm that they function.
  • Use sandboxing to stop phishing emails.
  • Use threat intelligence tools to find early warning signs of impending assaults and threat indicators. To increase your monitoring capabilities, use contemporary solutions that incorporate artificial intelligence and machine learning.
  • Employees should receive training and testing to stay current on emerging cyberthreats. To get security teams ready for a real attack, practice attack scenarios.
  • Obtain the free qualification checklist for cyber insurance.
  • The worth of cyber insurance.
  • An organization's recognition that no firm is invincible, despite the fact that most threats can be prevented and mitigated by strong cybersecurity defenses, is demonstrated by the existence of a cyber insurance policy. Getting cyber insurance shows that a company is concerned about both its own and its clients' risks, and it can be a wise addition to any enterprise risk management plan.

Cybersecurity is right for every business, regardless of its size, location, or revenue! The BDSLCCI Cybersecurity Framework is complying with the with the maximum pre-requisites of cyber insurance, especially for micro, small, and medium enterprises known as SMEs, SMBs, MSMEs, or startup companies.

by Dr. Shekhar Ashok Pawar

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Latest BDSLCCI framework 2.0 has modified Defense in Depth (DiD) as well as Mission Critical Asset (MCA).

The below table shows coverage of Defense in Depth according to the modified framework, which covers the pre-requisites of many cyber insurance products.

Defense in Depth (DiD)
Layer Title
List of Control
Areas BDSLCCI 2.0
Helps Organization
BDSLCCI DiD Level-1 Host/Endpoint Security Layer 1.1 - Host/Endpoint - Less Permission to Use
1.2 - Host/Endpoint - Endpoint Protection - Anti-Virus
1.3 - Host/Endpoint - Licensed Operating System (OS)
1.4 - Host/Endpoint - Block File Transfers
Data Security Layer 1.5 - Data - Encryption
1.6 - Data - Access control
1.7 - Data - Backup
1.8 - Data - Data Loss Prevention
1.9 - Data - Secure Deletion
Human Security Layer 1.10 - Human - Cybersecurity Awareness Training
1.11 - Human - Separation of Duties
1.12 - Human - Service Level Agreement (SLA)
1.13 - Human - Employee Background Check
1.14 - Human - Review Access Rights
1.15 - Human - Cyber Threat Alert Notifications
1.16 - Human - Cybersecurity Banners / Posters
1.17 - Human - Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA)
BDSLCCI DiD Level-2 Network Security Layer 2.1 - Network - Network Firewall
2.2 - Network - Network Access Control
2.3 - Network - Remote Access VPN
2.4 - Network - Instruction Detection & Prevention Systems (IDPS)
Application Security Layer 2.5 - Application - OWASP Coding Practices
2.6 - Application - Application Hardening
BDSLCCI DiD Level-3 Physical Perimeter Security Layer 3.1 - Physical Perimeter - Locked and Dead-Bolted Steel Doors
3.2 - Physical Perimeter - Closed-Circuit Surveillance Cameras (CCTV)
3.3 - Physical Perimeter - Picture IDs
3.4 - Physical Perimeter - Security Guards / Proper Lighting / Biometrics / Environmental Control
Governance Security Layer 3.5 - Governance - Incident Response Process and/or BCP
3.6 - Governance - Business Continuity Plan (BCP)
3.7 - Governance - Periodic Audit

SecureClaw Incorporation is the second venture of Dr. Pawar, which is on the mission of cybersecuring small and medium companies worldwide, which are known as MSMEs, small and medium businesses (SMBs), or even small and medium enterprises (SMEs), depending on their size, revenue, and location. For this article, let us consider the word SMB, which represents any of these kinds of companies. With his decades of international experience and research studies during his doctorate from the Swiss School of Business and Management in Geneva, Switzerland, Dr. Pawar has invented a new cybersecurity framework popularly known as Business Domain Specific Least Cybersecurity Controls Implementation (BDSLCCI), which is more focused on these kinds of organizations. Apart from continuous research and enhancement in BDSLCCI to make it more beneficial to MSMEs, SecureClaw also provides various cybersecurity services, which include the Virtual Chief Information Security Officer (V-CISO), Source Code Security Review, which is popularly known as static application security testing (SAST), dynamic application security testing (DAST), or vulnerability assessment and penetration testing (VAPT), as a few of its key offerings. These organizations have diverse experience in programming, telecom, and cybersecurity, which makes their expertise unique while designing solutions for their customers.

During international research studies by Dr. Pawar, the top management of SMB companies from 19 different countries participated.

It was evident that there were three major problems faced by those companies.

  • Small and medium-sized companies are not having enough funds or allocated budget for the implementation of hundreds of controls mandated by existing cybersecurity standards.
  • These companies do not have skilled teammates or other resources to implement and maintain cybersecurity controls.
  • Top management is not able to see the return on investment (RoI) for cybersecurity implementation, as the top priorities of such companies are not directly aligned with the recommended controls by existing cybersecurity standards or frameworks.

Dr. Pawar's research reveals that each SMB has a unique business domain and mission-critical asset (MCA) based on their sector. MCAs, such as data, information, or infrastructure, are crucial for a SMB's core business. For instance, healthcare MCAs might be Electronic Medical Record (EMR) software, while banking, financial services, and insurance (BSFI) MCAs might be financial records. MCAs can be information-related or even business function-related.

MCAs weigh confidentiality, integrity, and availability differently, and SMBs need cybersecurity controls. Defense in Depth (DiD) strategy addresses people, process, and technology. BDSLCCI framework provides recommendations for implementing DiD controls in parallel with MCA, designed by Dr. Pawar.

There are multiple ways to get BDSLCCI certification.

  • SMB can self-assist by directly registering itself on the BDSLCCI web portal. The BDSLCCI web portal provides secured access to various data points and guidance provided by the logic of the BDSLCCI framework.
  • SMB can identify a BDSLCCI member company, which is a certification body of BDSLCCI, authorized to provide BDSLCCI certificates as one of its services.
  • SMB can even hire BDSLCCI-authorized freelancers who can assist them in their BDSLCCI certification journey, where the final audit will be done by SecureClaw and the BDSLCCI certification and transcript will be issued by SecureClaw.

The BDSLCCI offers certifications and assessments at three different levels. On the incremental order of control implementation, SMB can be more cybersecure while reaching BDSLCCI Level 3.

Any startup, even one employee company, or any medium-scale company with hundreds of employees can get a customized or tailored cybersecurity controls list using BDSLCCI. It offers an ascending order of controls, aiding top management in decision-making. In situations where organizations need to take the Data Privacy and Protection Acts of their nation seriously to avoid high penalties if a data breach happens, or even to avail of cyber insurance, or to simply have better confidence in their way of working and handling customers’ critical assets, selecting SecureClaw’s BDSLCCI will be a very good choice. SecureClaw has been deployed in many SMBs/ SMEs/ MSMEs and has received good market feedback.

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