Supply chain interruption and natural catastrophe are the biggest worries on the minds of businesses, according to a recently released study from Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty. The firm interviewed more than 400 experts in corporate insurance in nearly three dozen countries when compiling the list, which seeks to provide a greater insight into the most timely hazards facing companies and insurers.
Rounding out the top 10 were fire and explosion, changes in legislation or regulation, market stagnation or decline, loss of reputation or brand value, intensified competition, cyber crime, information technology failures or espionage, theft, fraud or corruption, and quality deficiencies or serial defects.
Making the biggest leap this year were cyber crimes and IT failures, which rose seven spots from its ranking last year. This jump in awareness is unsurprising, considering the increasingly prominent role that digital systems are playing in virtually every business. It also highlights the strong need for IT contractor liability insurance; without some sort of coverage, companies are at a significantly higher risk of finding themselves on the wrong end of a catastrophic failure.
That digital hazard could well be connected with the worry about reputation management. As companies who have been breached have seen, it can be difficult to reestablish your brand as trustworthy in the wake of a major cyber crime. Similarly the top two concerns share a good amount of overlap: it would stand to reason that in the event of some sort of natural disaster, there would be some damage to the supply chain line that could cause interruption.
While some risk is unavoidable, the best thing that a company can do is to have a contingency plan in place before the worst happens.