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Specialty underwriter adds cyber extortion endorsement

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Liberty International Underwriters said on Monday that it has launched a cyber extortion endorsement to its product recall and contamination insurance policy for food and beverage companies.

This endorsement offers coverage to food and beverage policyholders for cyber extortion and consultant costs for acts against production and day-to-day operations, Liberty said in a statement.

To develop a response plan, Liberty’s cyber extortion endorsement also gives policyholders pre-incident access to its crisis consultancy red24, according to the statement.

“With operations being mostly automated now and an increasing reliance on technology, the food and beverage industry faces a very real risk of having its systems hijacked by cyber criminals and held for ransom,” Liberty’s senior vice president of global crisis management, Jane McCarthy said in a statement. “But what many companies don’t realize is that cyber extortion is not always covered under a typical cyber policy or by a general liability policy. We developed this to address the risks associated with new technology and ‘ransomware’, malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid.

The endorsement’s sublimit is $100k, according to a spokeswoman for Liberty.