During this time of explosive growth in high-tech and internet commerce, many companies are finding (much to their dismay) that their traditional liabilitycoverage doesn’t cover claims for things like intellectual property infringement, programming errors, non-functioning software, or major system crashes.
Technology Business Insurance pays for such claims from clients and all associated legal, claim investigation, and claim settlement fees. As with other types of business liability insurance, it usually also protects from costs associated with groundless claims.
What Tech Business Insurance Is Not
Many traditional Commercial General Liability (CGL) policies exclude certain technology-related risks. CGL policies typically focus on tangible losses to property or bodily damage to people. Intangible loss (like intellectual property infringement, software malfunction, or data loss) is a much more complicated matter.
Some CGL policies do cover certain intangible losses called advertising injury, but such coverage doesn’t usually apply to purported losses that aren’t directly tied to a company’s advertising.
Who Needs Tech Business Insurance?
Tech Business Insurance is strongly recommended for all high-tech and internet-based companies, including software developers, programmers, Information Technology (IT) businesses, systems analysts and designers, website developers, and Internet Service Providers (ISPs).
Non high-tech/internet companies that rely heavily on technology solutions (like database management, customer e-mail, computer networks, communication via company intranet) for their business survival may also want to take a closer look at this type of insurance.
Things To Think About
If you think you might need Tech Business Insurance, take a very close look at your existing CGL, D&O, and E&O coverage. Find out exactly what is and isn’t covered. Pay particular attention to named exclusions.
If you decide your exposure from technology or internet risks warrants special coverage, then make sure your expanded coverage covers the specific activities you engage in. Again, pay careful attention to all exclusions.
Also make sure the policy covers the right people. For example, does it cover part-time and contract workers? Former and retired employees? Consultants? Board members?