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Can digital transformation in insurance be achieved without security?

I recently spoke with Insurance CIO Outlook Magazine in response to an award Akamai received as a top 10 security provider for insurers. As part of the discussion, I shared the importance of security for insurance digital transformation.

Digital transformation is a matter of survival for todays insurers. Insurers are increasing digital channel adoption and native mobile applications to deliver exceptional experiences to their customers and agents to achieve a competitive edge. All these digital channels are dependent on the backbone of the Internet and are, therefore, vulnerable to reliability, performance, and security challenges.

Speaking with insurance customers globally, there is clear tension in balancing customer expectations for fast personalized digital experiences anywhere, at any time while maintaining security. As insurers consider adding additional security features, they run the risk of potentially diminishing the user experience. However, without the additional security features in place, insurers run an even greater risk.

The key distribution channel for insurers today is physical.  However, a recent report by Bain identifies explosive digital channel growth for  new premiums generated to more than double in the next three to five years.

Can digital transformation IMG1.png

(Source: Bain)

The Bain report also identifies that 79% of consumers plan to use a digital channel to interact with insurers, but only half of insurers have a realistic plan for digital transition.

Given this priority on digital channels, insurers need to manage their complex and intense security demands. Speed and user experience are top of mind for insurers but delivering on those while maintaining security can be a challenge.

The time is now for insurers to make security a priority on the digital agenda to deliver on customer expectations for fast, reliable, and secure experiences.

Here are 3 benefits insurers see when they prioritize security on their digital transformation agenda:

1. Protection of data, sites and applications from a security breach.

In today's quickly changing IT environment, mobile sites and applications are often the weakest and most-targeted points. Insurers have a wealth of data that is highly sought after by cyber criminals.  Using a combination of management tools and a cloud-based firewall to protect your infrastructure is key to reducing business disruption, providing revenue protection, improving application response time, and reducing risk to brand reputability.

2. Prevention of downtime with a DDoS protection solution.

Insurers are at an increased risk of larger, more frequent and sophisticated efforts to compromise their websites and applications in order to steal intellectual property and customer data. Having a DDoS protection strategy that offers scalable protection -- without compromising performance -- is essential in maintaining business continuity and brand reputation.

3. Cost reduction

Cyberattacks are becoming more sophisticated, easier to orchestrate, larger, and are happening more and more frequently. More attacks target web applications using methods such as local file inclusion (LFI), SQL injection (SQLi), and cross-site scripting. Evolving technologies, such as autonomous driving, will continue to push cybersecurity to the forefront of the conversation in the insurance industry.

Following a highly publicized cyber attack, a large U.S. Property & Casualty Insurance Carrier needed to restore consumer trust and protect itself from the exorbitant costs associated with an attack -- the average cost of a one-day outage is estimated at over $1 million in lost revenue, productivity, recovery, and brand value.

Security and performance don't need to be viewed as tradeoffs - both are required to achieve digital transformation. Insurers should look to vendors that address more than just latency issues, and deliver both security and performance capabilities.

Insurers can't achieve digital transformation without security.

Please reach out to us if you are interested in learning more, or we can assist you in any way. Learn more how Akamai is helping insurers at Akamai.com/insurance

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