Insurance and Ashley Madison

Aug 24, 2015

  1. DJAJ
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    DJAJ Super Genius

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    So from an insurance prospective what happens here? Is the insurer on the hook for insured amount? How does this play out?
     
    DJAJ, Aug 24, 2015
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  2. Indiana_Adam
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    It depends.

    If Ashley Madison has data breach/cyber liability, then my guess is yes. I don't know if credit card/ssn/sensitive information was also released. However, with the nature of the business, I would say they guaranteed their clients' a certain level of anonymity, which this data breach compromised. I believe it would be covered under such coverage, even though the information itself isn't sensitive(Names and Addresses) but again, due to the nature of the business.

    If they don't have the cyber/data breach liability, then no. Their GL will not cover this. Regardless, my guess is this breach will cause the company to collapse and will probably hurt other similar sites, at least temporarily until everyone forgets about it.

    I wonder how many people will actually sue. This site was used to keep their actions/pursuits on the DL. Whether or not there were ramifications of their spouses' finding out, how many people want to their names smeared all over media for the public to know? My guess is not many.
     
  3. Arnage150
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    Not so fast. I bet there is some coverage under their GL policie's personal and advertising limit. They advertised it was anonymous. It was not. It caused their members personal and financial injury via divorces.
     
  4. Indiana_Adam
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    Indiana_Adam Guru

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    Arnage, I know you have much more experience than me, but I'm going to respectfully disagree. The information was stolen electronically(data breach) which isn't covered under any normal GL. I'm sticking with Data Breach/Cyber Liability. Beyond that, maybe also technology E&O claim. Their website(which claimed to provide anonymity) failed to do so? Besides, everyone SHOULD know there is no such thing as pure anonymity on the internet.

    Per IRMI
    PI includes: false arrest, detention, or imprisonment; malicious prosecution; wrongful eviction; slander; libel; and invasion of privacy.
    AI insures the following offenses in connection with the insured's advertising of its goods or services: libel, slander, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement, and misappropriation of advertising ideas.

    One could also argue the client's divorce/financial ruin/social ruin/etc. was really their own fault/proximate cause. If they hadn't utilized a website designed for cheaters, then there would have been no harm done. Maybe?

    I'm sure we can both agree it sucks to be all those involved right now. Except the lawyers. They make some monies on this.
     
  5. Matt37
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    Matt37 Super Genius

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    Indiana_Adam is 100% correct.

    There is no coverage for an event like this under the GL form, this is a cyber claim and I am assuming since a company like AM biggest exposure is a cyber exposure they had adequate coverage.

    But I will say I have been with Philadelphia Insurance Co. for 15 years now and we rolled out a Cyber product about 3 years ago and it is the one coverage that scares us the most.

    We are a carrier that writes gun ranges, shops and manufacturing as well as student housing and cyber is the one that scares us the most.

    Curious to see who was on the cyber .. I am sure it was layered with several carriers.
     
    Matt37, Aug 25, 2015
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  6. Arnage150
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    I'm not doubting the a cyber policy is the main policy to respond. I just think the lawsuit will be so large that any related insurance company will be dragged in. I can see an attorney dragging in the GL carrier when the cyber limits are exhausted or in addition to. They definitely slandered the reputations of their clients.
     
  7. djs
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    djs Super Moderator Moderator

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    If its only name, address and email address, it is going to be hard for anyone to prove 'harm' from this.

    Divorce? This breach didn't cause the divorce, the infidelity did.

    Also, I'm assuming most people had a separate yahoo or gmail account setup for this anyway.

    If they got credit card data (no indication they did), then we are talking a different game, but getting basic account info isn't the end of the world.

    And no, it won't be the end. My guess is, strangely enough, Ashley Madison traffic is up due to this, not down. Not sure it will result in more paying clients, but it will drive out the curiosity seekers in droves.

    All that said, some lawyer is going to work on a class action suit, I'm sure.

    Dan
     
    djs, Aug 25, 2015
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  8. underwriter1
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    underwriter1 New Member

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    I'm with Indiana_Adam, it's potential cyber liability, which by the way, every business should have. I hope the suits put AM out of business. You can say the members were at fault, but not all of them cheated, they just joined. If they cheated, then they get what they deserve, which is embarrassment, if not worse.
     
  9. xrac
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    I too hope it puts them under.
     
    xrac, Aug 27, 2015
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  10. EugeneM
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    Cyber is our #1 seller in terms of new premium for P&C.

    Its funny we have been talking to companies you think would not care about cyber liability for example some Big Breweries here in LA an San Diego...

    Regarding Ashley Madison its obviously a databreach. Its not a matter of IF its a matter of how much and who will make claims. Never have seen their client agreement and the fine print but I am sure they have something in there preventing clients from making claims or at least making it hard for them.


     
    EugeneM, Aug 28, 2015
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