Internet Service Provider Insurance Policy Information
Internet Service Provider Insurance. We live in a world where everyone - from private individuals to educational institutions, and from commercial ventures to government operations - increasingly depends on the world wide web.
Internet service providers (ISPs) provide their clients with access to the Internet or World Wide Web by either direct, dedicated connections, dial-up services using telephone lines and computer modems, or wireless services using radio transmitters, cell phone towers, or fiber optics.
High-speed Internet refers to services offered at a much higher speed than through traditional telephone lines, allowing for large amounts of information to be transferred, such as video and audio signals. Various types of high-speed services come under terms like broadband, T1, and T3 (dedicated cables), and Wi-Fi (wireless).
Normally, e-mail, name registry, technical support, development of home pages, access to Internet servers, cloud storage, and other related services are available. Some ISPs offer integrated services that include cable television and telephone access.
The wealth of information and communication options would be impossible without Internet service providers. In their basic form, Internet service providers allow customers to access the Internet.
ISPs may also, however, additionally provide a broad range of related services. Many Internet service providers offer email and web hosting services, for example, while some offer colocation centers for servers.
While there is no question that Internet service provides, which exist in a variety of sizes with an equally broad spectrum of business models, can be thriving and profitable businesses, it is also true that Internet service providers, particularly smaller ones, face a multitude of risks that could endanger their success at any time.
Just like other companies, they therefore require the right Internet service provider insurance. What kinds of coverage might an ISP need to carry, and why?
Internet service provider insurance protects ISPs from lawsuits with rates as low as $47/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Below are some answers to commonly asked Internet service provider insurance questions:
- How Much Does Internet Service Provider Insurance Cost?
- Why Do Internet Service Providers Need Insurance?
- What Type Of Insurance Do Internet Service Providers Need?
How Much Does Internet Service Provider Insurance Cost?
The average price of a standard $1,000,000/$2,000,000 General Liability Insurance policy for small ISPs ranges from $47 to $79 per month based on location, size, revenue, claims history and more.
Why Do Internet Service Providers Need Insurance?
Internet service providers may do everything in their power to ensure that they provide outstanding service to their customers, and that their operation runs smoothly, but the fact remains that they, too, may fall victim to unforeseen circumstances that could lead to astronomical costs.
Internet service providers have to contend with the same hazards as nearly any other commercial venture, but in addition, they also have industry-specific risks.
An act of nature, such as a wildfire, severe flood, earthquake, or storm, could damage an Internet service provider's office space and other important commercial property, for instance.
Physical theft and vandalism, or serious accidents, are other genuine threats. In addition, Internet service providers may deal with sudden equipment failure that leads to service interruptions.
Smaller Internet service providers, like transit or virtual ISPs, may find their service suddenly disrupted due to their upstream provider. Cyber crimes like data theft and DDoS attacks also, of course, have to be on the radar of an ISP.
Then, there is always the possibility that an employee or third party becomes injured on the premises, even as the result of something simple like slipping on a wet floor or developing repetitive stress injury after prolonged computer work.
While these perils are merely examples of the kinds of threats an Internet service provider may face, it is clear that they are all accompanied by profound financial losses, whether due to repair or replacement costs arising from property loss or damage, or in the form of litigation. To protect their financial health, an ISP will need to arm itself with comprehensive Internet service provider insurance coverage.
What Type Of Insurance Do Internet Service Providers Need?
An Internet service provider's insurance needs will heavily depend on their unique business, and factors that include the jurisdiction where the company is based, the scope and value of its physical and electronic assets, and its number of employees all influence the types of coverage that are required.
In consulting a skilled commercial insurance broker, an Internet service provider can ensure that their needs are fully met. Meanwhile, the following are examples of Internet service provider insurance types an ISP should be aware of:
- Commercial Property: This form of insurance serves the purpose of protecting a company's business premises, as well as other physical assets, in the event of perils such as acts of nature, theft, and vandalism. It will help cover repair and replacement costs to a specified upper limit.
- Commercial General Liability: Essential for any serious commercial venture, this type of Internet service provider insurance coverage will offer coverage for legal and related fees in case the company faces third party property damage or bodily injury claims.
- Professional Liability: Should an ISP face allegations of not carrying out its professional duties or being negligent, for instance by failing to adequately secure customers' sensitive data, this kind of insurance helps manage the financial consequences.
- Workers' Compensation: Internet service providers will have numerous employees with varied job descriptions. Should any of them sustain an occupational injury, workers comp insurance takes care of the employee's medical expenses, and also covers any lost income if they need time to recover.
These important kinds of Internet service provider insurance are, however, simply examples of the coverage ISPs may need. For complete peace of mind, it is vital for companies to talk their needs through with an experienced commercial insurance broker who understands their individual risk profile.
Internet Service Provider's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is very limited because most client contact is done electronically or by mail. If clients visit the premises, they must be confined to designated areas so that they cannot view or overhear conversations regarding other clients' confidential information.
To prevent slips, trips, or falls, all areas accessible to clients must be well maintained with floor covering in good condition. The number of exits must be sufficient and be well marked, with backup lighting in case of power failure. Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls.
Personal injury exposures arise from allegations of breach of confidentiality as employees dealing with clients have access to their records. The exposure increases if calls are not monitored regularly and unusual activities noted.
Products liability exposure could come from supplying a corrupted disk or download to a client.
Professional liability and errors and omissions exposures are high. The failure to supply services, especially to business and institutional customers such as medical facilities, could result in a shutdown of the client's operations.
While some websites may be unavailable through no fault of the ISP, all services within their control must be available as promised. There should be redundancy in both connections to the Internet and bandwidth, which is a measure of the amount of information usage.
Workers compensation exposure is generally limited to that of an office, although there may be some off-site service and repair work. As work is done on computers, potential injuries include eyestrain, neck strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and similar cumulative trauma injuries that can be addressed through ergonomically designed workstations.
Back sprains and strains can result from lifting and other material handling if there is any moving of computers or related equipment. If work is done at clients' premises, workers can be injured by slips and falls, assaults, or in automobile or aviation accidents.
Property exposures consist of an office operation and areas for service work on computers. Ignition sources include extensive electrical wiring to support computers and servers, heating and air conditioning systems, wear, and overheating of equipment. Fire, smoke, and water can cause significant damage to equipment.
Fire protection should consist of chemical applications instead of water. The concentration of electronic equipment may be targeted by thieves. Appropriate security controls should be taken, including physical barriers to prevent unauthorized access to the premises after hours and an alarm system that reports directly to a central station or the police department.
Although computer equipment can be included as part of the business personal property coverage, better and more complete protection is available under an inland marine computer or EDP policy. Extra expense coverage and a detailed emergency plan should be in place since downtime is not an option.
Equipment breakdown exposures are high as customers expect 24/7 access. Climate control is essential to proper computer function. Breakdown, especially of the air-conditioning units, may cause serious loss. There is also significant potential for direct or indirect loss due to computer breakdown or damage by power surges and power failure affecting hardware, data, and media.
Inland marine exposure includes accounts receivable if the provider offers credit, computers, and valuable papers and records for customers' information. A computer or EDP policy is critical as it covers hardware, software, and media. Servers can be damaged by breakdown, power surges, power failure, and computer viruses in addition to traditional property perils.
Extra expense and equipment breakdown exposures are very high as clients expect their ISPs to be operational at all times. The provider must be prepared to restore service and immediately handle any problems that arise. All information must have backups stored off-site.
If the designer keeps clients' property on site, bailees customers coverage will be needed. Off-site property exposures may be high as employees may have portable computers or home-site workstations.
Crime exposure is from employee dishonesty and computer fraud. ISP's may have access to private financial information of their clients, especially for billing purposes. Potential for theft, directly or through identity theft, is great.
Background checks should be conducted on all employees. Hazards increase without monitoring procedures and securing all records to prevent unauthorized access.
There must be a separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and reconciling bank statements. Audits should be performed at least annually.
Business auto exposure is normally limited to hired and non-owned liability. If there are servers in multiple locations, service technicians may use company vehicles to get to the site for service and repair.
If vehicles are provided to employees, there should be written procedures in place regarding personal use by employees and their family members. All drivers must have appropriate licenses and acceptable MVRs. Vehicles must be maintained and records kept in a central location.
Commercial Insurance And Business Industry Classification
- SIC CODE: 7375 Information Retrieval Services
- NAICS CODE: 517110 Wired Telecommunications Carriers, 517210 Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite), 517919 All Other Telecommunications
- Suggested ISO General Liability Code(s): 47610 Internet Service Providers
- Suggested Workers Compensation Code(s): 8901 Telecommunications Co.: Office or Exchange Employees & Clerical
Description for 7375 Information Retrieval Services
Division I: Services | Major Group 73: Business Services | Industry Group 737: Computer Programming, Data Processing, And Other Computer Related Services
7375: Information Retrieval Services: Establishments primarily engaged in providing on-line information retrieval services on a contract or fee basis. The information generally involves a range of subjects and is taken from other primary sources. Establishments primarily engaged in performing activities, such as credit reporting, direct mail advertising, stock quotation services, etc., and who also create data bases are classified according to their primary activity. Establishments primarily engaged in collecting data bases from primary sources and reformatting or editing them for distribution through information retrieval services are classified in Industry 7379.
- Data base information retrieval services
- Information retrieval services, on-line
- On-line data base information retrieval services
- Remote data base information retrieval services
Internet Service Provider Insurance - The Bottom Line
To protect your ISP business, employees and customers, having the right Internet service provider insurance coverage is important. To discover the exact types policies your business needs, how much coverage you should invest in and the costs - speak to a reputable commercial insurance broker.
Types Of Small Business Insurance - Requirements & Regulations
Perhaps you have the next great idea for a product or service that you know will appeal to your local area. If you've got a business, you've got risks. Unexpected events and lawsuits can wipe out a business quickly, wasting all the time and money you've invested.
Operating a business is challenging enough without having to worry about suffering a significant financial loss due to unforeseen and unplanned circumstances. Small business insurance can protect your company from some of the more common losses experienced by business owners, such as property damage, business interruption, theft, liability, and employee injury.
Purchasing the appropriate commercial insurance coverage can make the difference between going out of business after a loss or recovering with minimal business interruption and financial impairment to your company's operations.
Insurance is so important to proper business function that both federal governments and state governments require companies to carry certain types. Thus, being properly insured also helps you protect your company by protecting it from government fines and penalties.
Small Business Insurance Information
In the business world, there are many risks faced by company's every day. The best way that business owners can protect themselves from these perils is by carrying the right insurance coverage.
The The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the U.S. standard-setting and regulatory support organization. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer review, and coordinate their regulatory oversight.
Commercial insurance is particularly important for small business owners, as they stand to lose a lot more. Should a situation arise - a lawsuit, property damage, theft, etc. - small business owners could end up facing serious financial turmoil.
According to the SBA, having the right insurance plan in place can help you avoid major pitfalls. Your business insurance should offer coverage for all of your assets. It should also include liability and casual coverage.
Types Of Small Business Insurance
Choosing the right type of coverage is absolutely vital. You've got plenty of options. Some you'll need. Some you won't. You should know what's available. Once you look over your options you'll need to conduct a thorough risk assessment. As you evaluate each type of insurance, ask yourself:
- What type of business am I running?
- What are common risks associated with this industry?
- Does this type of insurance cover a situation that could feasibly arise during the normal course of doing business?
- Does my state require me to carry this type of insurance?
- Does my lender or do any of my investors require me to carry this type of policy?
A licensed insurance agent or broker in your state can help you determine what kinds of coverages are prudent for your business types. If you find one licensed to sell multiple policies from multiple companies (independent agents) that person can often help you get the best insurance rates, too. Following is some information on some of the most common small business insurance policies:
|Business Insurance Policy Type||What Is Covered?|
|General Liability Insurance||What is covered under commercial general liability insurance? It steps in to pay claims when you lose a lawsuit with an injured customer, employee, or vendor. The injury could be physical, or it could be a financial loss based on advertising practices.|
|Workers Compensation Insurance||What is covered under workers compensation insurance? This type of insurance protects a business and its owner(s) from claims by employees who suffer a work-related injury, illness or disease. Workers comp typically provides the injured employee with benefits to cover medical expenses, a portion of his/her lost wages, rehabilitation costs if applicable, and permanent partial or permanent total disability.|
|Product Liability Insurance||What is covered under product liability insurance? I pays an injured party's settlement or lawsuit claim arising from a defective product. These are usually caused by design defects, manufacturing defects, or a failure to provide adequate warning or instructions as to how to safely use the product.|
|Commercial Property Insurance||What is covered under business property insurance? General liability policies don't cover damages to your business property. That's what commercial property insurance is for. It protects all of the physical parts of your business: your building, your inventory, and your equipment, giving you the funds you need to replace them in the event of a disaster. If you work from home, you might consider a Home Based Business Insurance policy instead.|
|Business Owners Policy (BOP)||What is covered under a business owners policy (BOP)? This is a policy designed for small, low-risk businesses. It simplifies the basic insurance purchase process by combining general liability policies with business income and commercial property insurance.|
|Commercial Auto Insurance||What is covered under business auto insurance? This type of insurance covers automobiles being used for business purposes. This could include a fleet of business-only vehicles or a single company car. In some cases it might cover your car or your employee's car while they're being used for business. These policies have much higher limits, ensuring you can cover your costs if one of these vehicles gets into an accident.|
|Commercial Umbrella Policies||What is covered under commercial umbrella insurance? This type of policy is a sort of "gap" insurance. It covers your liability in the event that a court verdict or settlement exceeds your general liability policy limits.|
|Liquor Liability Insurance||What is covered under liquor liability insurance? It covers bodily injury or property damage caused by an intoxicated person who was served liquor by the policy holder.|
|Professional Liability (Errors & Omissions)||What is covered under professional liability insurance? This type of business insurance is also known as malpractice oe E&O. It covers the damages that can arise from major mistakes, especially in high-stakes professions where mistakes can be devastating.|
|Surety Bond||What is covered under surety bonds? Bonding is a contract where one party, the SURETY (who assures the obligee that the principal can perform the task), guarantees the performance of certain obligations of a second party, the PRINCIPAL (the contractor or business who will perform the contractual obligation), to a third party, the OBLIGEE (the project owner who is the recipient of an obligation).|
Who Needs General Liability Insurance? - Virtually every business. A single lawsuit or settlement could bankrupt your business five times over. You might also need this policy to win business. Many companies and government agencies won't do business with your company until you can produce proof that you've obtained one of these policies.
Business Insurance Required by Law
If you have any employees most states will require you to carry worker's compensation and unemployment insurance. Some states require you to insure yourself even if you are the only employee working in the business.
Your insurance agent can help you check applicable state laws so you can bring your business into compliance.
Other Types Of Small Business Insurance
There are dozens of other, more specialized forms of small business insurance capable of covering specific problems and risks. These forms of insurance include:
- Business Interruption Insurance
- Commercial Flood Insurance
- Contractor's Insurance
- Cyber Liability
- Data Breach
- Directors and Officers
- Employment Practices Liability
- Environmental or Pollution Liability
- Management Liability
- Sexual Misconduct Liability
Whether you need any or all of these policies will depend on the results of your risk assessment. For example, you probably don't need an environmental or pollution policy if you're running an IT company out of a leased office, but you would need data breach and cyber liability policies to fully protect your business.
Also learn about small business insurance requirements for general liability, business property, commercial auto & workers compensation including small business commercial insurance costs. Call us (855) 767-7828.
Additional Resources For Information Technology & Internet Insurance
Learn about small business IT technology insurance policies that help protect IT businesses, consultants & subcontractors from the unique risks that small tech businesses face when they work.
- Application Development
- Amazon Seller
- Artificial Intelligence
- Computer Electronic Repair
- Computer Programming
- Computer System / Network Developer
- Cyber Liability
- Data Breach
- eBay Sellers
- Electronic Data Processing
- Electronic Data Processing Equipment
- Internet Business
- Internet Service Provider
- IT Consultant
- Online Store
- Social Media
- Software Developer
- Technology Services
- Website Design
Some the more popular IT businesses do IT contracting or freelancing work. These businesses have specific risks they face, and can have huge exposures to uncommon risks. Even if the business is very careful, a small oversight or mistake can lead to a large and expensive lawsuit.
For information technology companies, like some of the more popular ones listed below, data security is paramount:
Application Development (Mobile & Web), Business Intelligence / Data Mining Businesses, Computer Installation & Repair, Computer Programming, Computer Retail Store, Data Analysts, Architects & Scientists, Database Administrators, Frontend Developers, Hosting, IT Business Consulting, IT Project Management, IT Staffing, IT Training, Information Technology Consulting, Life Sciences & R&D, Network Architects, Network Security Consultants, System & Network Design, Technical Writing and Web Site Development.
The IT business segment has a critical need for professional liability and errors and omissions coverage. If coverage applies, the insurer has several rights and duties such as providing a legal defense against claims and suits brought by parties claiming damages. The insurer is permitted to investigate all claims to determine whether they are covered by the policy and they may choose to litigate, deny or settle claims.
Most policies providing coverage for electronic data liability, computer professional liability, and computer errors and omissions are claims-made contracts.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Business Income with Extra Expense, Equipment Breakdown, Computer Fraud, Employee Dishonesty, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits Liability, Errors and Omissions Liability, Professional Liability, Umbrella Liability, Hired and Nonowned Auto Liability & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Earthquake, Flood, Real Property Legal Liability, Forgery, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices Liability, Directors and Officers Liability, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage and Stop Gap Liability.