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Source: Middle East Insurance Review | Dec 2021

Aon launches cyber product for EMEA and UK businesses
Aon has launched a new offering, called Ransomware Defence, aimed at addressing cyber insurability challenges and increasing the resilience of businesses in the UK and the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region.
 
Ransomware Defence brings Aon’s cyber security expertise and capabilities together into one solution to help mid-market organisations improve and demonstrate their cyber preparedness. The offering can help a client mitigate its risk of a ransomware attack while also facilitating cyber insurance placement.
 
The coverage includes attack surface assessment, external threat scanning, attack simulations and incident response readiness assessment.
 
Insurers are experiencing mounting losses, largely driven by the proliferation of ransomware, with the frequency of events up nearly 500% since 2018, according to Aon. Increased frequency and severity of losses have driven significant rate increases and led to more challenging insurance placements and renewals in the cyber insurance market.
 
 While larger organisations may have more sophisticated security controls in place, many mid-market organisations across the UK and EMEA are failing to demonstrate adequate preparedness, Aon said. “This makes them both more vulnerable to cyber threats and can lead to very difficult, if not impossible, cyber insurance placements.”
 
Aon has also released a guide to provide further information on improving cyber security and insurability. M 
 
Bahrain: BNI to offer cover specifically for electric cars
Bahrain National Insurance (BNI) has launched the first motor insurance policy in the kingdom developed specifically for electric vehicles as part of its efforts to promote environmental sustainability.
 
The policy provides extensive coverage that includes the battery and charging cables, in addition to benefits such as roadside assistance, alternative car service, home assistance and a vehicle pick-up and drop-off service.
 
BNI acting assistant general manager in charge of motor and personal insurance Mohammed Salman said with the emergence and development of electric cars, which are becoming increasingly popular, the company is introducing the insurance cover specifically for such vehicles, reported the newspaper Alayam.
 
Mr Salman added, “Electric cars have special needs, and our new insurance product will enable drivers to be confident to switch to using this type of car in the future, knowing that they have the appropriate coverage to protect them and their car from damage, fire, theft, or when they are connected to public charging points.”
 
He said, “Through our products and services, we at BNI aim to protect our customers from the effects of climate change, reduce the environmental impact and provide energy-efficient alternatives to help lower customers’ long-term energy costs and advance our environmental, social, corporate governance and sustainability goals.” M 
 
UAE: Emirates to end free COVID-19 medical insurance cover 
Emirates will stop offering complimentary medical insurance cover for COVID-19 on flights booked after 30 November.
 
The airline said it was ending the insurance after ‘a review of customer usage and feedback’, according to media reports. Passengers have until the end of November 2021 to book a ticket inclusive of the airline’s current free multi-risk insurance cover.
 
The reports added that the airline has plans to replace the existing cover with a new COVID-19-related medical travel insurance. A spokesperson for the airline was quoted as saying, “It is our plan to continue providing our customers with a complimentary COVID-19-related medical travel insurance cover, and we hope to announce updates on this front in the coming weeks.”
 
Emirates was the first airline to introduce free medical cover for COVID-19-related expenses in July 2020 in order to ease travellers’ worries about quarantine or medical treatment costs should they receive a positive COVID-19 diagnosis during a trip.
 
Etihad Airways will continue to offer COVID-19 medical insurance with all tickets until 31 March 2022. The UAE’s national carrier introduced free travel insurance for passengers in September 2020. M 
 
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