Lockton launches 'seamless insurance solution' for solicitors
Interlock combines PII, cyber, and crime cover in one policy
Lockton, a provider of insurance solutions for law firms, has created a unique 'interlocking' insurance product for the UK legal sector, combining both cyber and crime cover with compulsory Solicitors Regulation Authority professional indemnity insurance (PII) protection in one insurance policy.
The professional services firm explains that Interlock has been created in response to the growing threat posed by sophisticated criminals specifically targeting law firms, as well as the need for firms to address and protect their risk profile as new regulatory obligations are introduced.
The insurance policy protects first and third-party interests by covering both law firms and their clients. In an event where the insurance needs to be utilised, a firm simply triggers one fully integrated policy, avoiding potential delays caused by juggling multiple policies with different insurers.
Brian Boehmer, a partner in Lockton's solicitors practice, said: 'Interlock is a first-of-its-kind product that provides a much-needed solution to modern-day business risks affecting legal firms in England and Wales. Until now, the regulated legal profession has been limited to 'bundled' products where separate policies cover the firm.
'A potential issue that may arise with separate insurance policies is that insurance could be available on more than one of the policies. Insurers could argue over who is liable for what, causing unnecessary conflict between insurers and delays for the insurance buyer. With Interlock, this won't be the case.'
According to the British Chambers of Commerce, one in five businesses have fallen victim to cyber attacks in the past year. Interlock's cyber cover includes protection for breach of privacy; business interruption; media risk; malicious code; cyber extortion; and claims expenses.
Last year it was also revealed that £85m had been stolen by hackers from law firms in an 18-month period. Three-quarters of the cyber crimes reported to the SRA in 2016 were some form of 'Friday afternoon fraud', with £7m of client losses resulting from email hacks of conveyancing transactions.
Lockton says its product protects against such incidence, and covers funds held both in the office and in the client's account from both external and internal threats, including cyber-related crime.
Additional areas covered by the policy include computer and rectification costs; forensic and security specialist costs; crisis management and PR costs; and legal costs.
Boehmer added: 'When a cyber breach happens, time is of the essence. The seamless nature of this product allows clients to report and deal with cyber breaches efficiently without the need to activate multiple policies. Expert responders are on hand to guide clients through the process and help rectify the security issue as quickly as possible.'