CXO Bytes

Safeguarding Small Businesses in India: The Crucial Role of Cyber Insurance

By Subramanyam Brahmajosyula


Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are turning into being the backbone of business ecosystem in India. In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, the increasing need for technology to enhance efficiency has become more pronounced than ever before. With the advent of the digital age, businesses are recognizing the pivotal role that technology plays in streamlining operations, optimizing processes, and ultimately driving growth. The dependence on technology is not merely a trend but a necessity, as businesses strive to remain competitive, agile, and resilient in an ever-changing environment.


The integration of technology into business operations has become a cornerstone of success, enabling SMEs to adapt to new challenges, capitalize on emerging opportunities, and deliver exceptional value to their customers. However, this dependence on technology also makes them vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Cybercriminals often target small businesses due to their limited resources, making them an easy target. As a result, it has become crucial for small businesses in India  to take proactive steps to protect themselves from cyber threats.


According to the PWC Global Risk Survey 2023, Indian organizations are not shying away from making bold investments in cybersecurity, with more than half the respondents planning to invest in cybersecurity tools (55%) and artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and automation technologies (55%) in the next 1 to 3 years. This indicates growing awareness on the importance of cybersecurity among Indian businesses. The survey also highlights that the top threats organizations in India feel exposed to is cyber risks with 38% of respondents feeling highly or extremely exposed to this risk. This underscores the urgent need for small businesses in India to take proactive steps to protect themselves from cyber threats.


One of the most effective ways for small businesses in India to protect themselves from cyber-attacks is by investing in cyber insurance. Cyber insurance provides financial protection against the costs associated with cyber-attacks, including legal fees, data recovery, and other related expenses. This can be especially important for small businesses in India, as the costs associated with a cyber-attack can be significant and potentially devastating.


In addition to providing financial protection, cyber insurance also provides peace of mind to small business owners in India. Knowing that they have a policy in place that will help cover the costs associated with a cyber-attack, it can help small business owners in India to focus on running their business rather than worrying about the potential financial impact of a cyber-attack.


When choosing a cyber insurance policy, it’s important for small businesses to carefully evaluate their cyber risks and choose a policy with adequate coverage. This includes considering the types of cyber-attacks that are most likely to affect their business and ensuring that the policy provides coverage for those types of attacks.


Cyber insurance is an essential tool for small businesses in India to protect themselves from cyber-attacks. It provides financial protection against the costs associated with a cyber-attack and helps small business owners  recover more quickly from an attack. By carefully evaluating their cyber risks and choosing a policy with adequate coverage, small businesses can ensure that they are adequately protected against cyber threats.


(The author is Subramanyam Brahmajosyula, Chief Technical Officer, SBI General Insurance, and the views expressed in this article are his own)