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HSB Survey Finds Data Breaches Target More Consumers

ID Theft Up, Smartphone Ownership Hits 85 Percent


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    Hands holding credit card and using smart phone. Internet online shopping
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    Data breaches are threatening the security of more U.S. consumers, according to a survey released by HSB, part of Munich Re, with more than a third reporting that their personal information was exposed.

    The poll conducted for HSB by Zogby Analytics showed 39 percent of consumers had learned their personal data was compromised at some point and 51 percent of them were notified in the previous 12 months. Both findings were up five percent.

    Once aware of the data breach, 46 percent of the affected individuals took advantage of free credit monitoring services, a five percent increase over a similar HSB survey two years earlier.

    “Consumers are demanding, and getting, personal services when their data is compromised,” said Timothy Zeilman, vice president for HSB, a leading provider of cyber insurance for consumers and businesses. “Access to credit and fraud monitoring, identity theft case management, legal help and other professional services is increasingly important.”

    The HSB survey found that 21 percent of consumers said they had been the victim of identity theft, compared with 18 percent two years before.

    Most of them (38 percent) became aware of the identity theft through a data breach notification and 28 percent by checking a credit report, an eight percent rise.

    Although 61 percent of consumers said they regularly review their credit reports, only 11 percent were willing to pay for the information.

    The number of people experiencing a computer virus, hacking, or other cyber- attack continued to decline, to 26 percent from 32 percent, as security practices get better.

    Smartphone ownership jumped eight percent over two years to 85 percent and consumers are more likely to protect them with passwords, access codes, passphrases and biometric methods.

    Americans over age 50 are significantly less apt to own a smartphone than younger people: 92 percent of consumers age 30-49 owned smartphones and 83 percent age 50-64.

    Note for the editorial staff

    For further questions please contact
    Dennis Milewski
    Dennis Milewski
    Media Relations, HSB


    Survey Methodology - Zogby Analytics was commissioned by Hartford Steam Boiler to conduct a survey in December 2018 of 1,510 adults in the United States.  Based on a confidence interval of 95 percent, the results had a margin for error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.  That means all other things being equal, the identical survey repeated would have results within the margin of error 95 times out of 100.

    Hartford Steam Boiler (HSB), part of Munich Re, is a multi-line specialty insurer and provider of inspection, risk management and IoT technology services. HSB insurance offerings include equipment breakdown, cyber risk, specialty liability and other coverages. HSB blends its engineering expertise, technology and data to craft inventive insurance and service solutions for existing and emerging risks posed by technological change. Throughout its 150 year history HSB’s mission has been to help clients prevent loss, advance sustainable use of energy and build deeper relationships that benefit business, public institutions and consumers. HSB holds A.M. Best Company’s highest financial rating, A++ (Superior). Connect with HSB on LinkedInTwitter and Facebook.

    Munich Re is one of the world’s leading providers of reinsurance, primary insurance and insurance-related risk solutions. The group consists of the reinsurance and ERGO business segments, as well as the capital investment company MEAG. Munich Re is globally active and operates in all lines of the insurance business. Since it was founded in 1880, Munich Re has been known for its unrivalled risk-related expertise and its sound financial position. It offers customers financial protection when faced with exceptional levels of damage – from the 1906 San Francisco earthquake to the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season and the California wildfires in 2018. Munich Re possesses outstanding innovative strength, which enables it to also provide coverage for extraordinary risks such as rocket launches, renewable energies, cyber attacks, or pandemics. The company is playing a key role in driving forward the digital transformation of the insurance industry, and in doing so has further expanded its ability to assess risks and the range of services that it offers. Its tailor-made solutions and close proximity to its customers make Munich Re one of the world’s most sought-after risk partners for businesses, institutions, and private individuals.

    Hartford, Connecticut, April 23, 2019

    The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company
    One State Street
    P.O. Box 5024
    Hartford, Connecticut 06102-5024
    United States