Rising Star Margaux Weinraub on Going Beyond the Status Quo and Building Resilience Against Cyber Threats
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Margaux L. Weinraub, cyber practice leader at Graham Company, was recognized as a 2022 Cyber Power Broker finalist. Below, Weinraub shares her take on key lessons learned in the cyber insurance arena over the past year, as well as where she sees opportunities for more growth and resilience.
Risk & Insurance: What are the main lessons that brokers, insureds and cyber underwriters have learned over the past year as companies experienced more breaches than ever before?
Margaux Weinraub: One main lesson many of us in the industry have learned is to throw out the standard practices we’ve followed previously.
Over the past two years, the cyber insurance market experienced high increases in premiums paid and stringent cybersecurity control requirements driven by the growing demand for cyber insurance against higher loss ratios for cyber insurers.
In 2023, we aren’t accepting the status quo anymore. Rather than carriers driving the decision, we are now seeing a shift as conditions begin to stabilize, putting the power back in our clients’ hands.
R&I: What are the top things organizations can do to predict and prevent potential cyber claims down the line?
MW: The only way organizations can predict and prevent potential cyber claims is to really know and understand the environment they’re in. Organizations must inventory, assess and improve their systems and people in order to fully understand how to mitigate their unique risk exposures.
Transparency and clear communication are also key. With the security landscape evolving so frequently, tabletop discussions are strongly encouraged in order to keep incident response plans up to date and ensure alignment across the board.
At Graham Company, we have developed Graham Cyber Blueprint, a proprietary questionnaire that helps organizations identify potential risks and areas for improvement with the goal of strengthening the company’s cybersecurity defenses. This is continuously monitored and updated by our cyber specialists to ensure it is comprehensive and relevant to the latest cyber trends.
We stress the importance of continuous improvement and adjustments in order to prevent catastrophic incidents down the line.
R&I: Where do you see the most exciting growth opportunities in the cyber insurance business?
MW: The most exciting part about the cyber insurance business right now is the collaboration. Everyone is working together to achieve cyber resiliency.
The goal is to get the carriers, brokers, clients and vendors all on the same page. When all these parties are working together, we see better outcomes for everyone. More than ever, we are all working toward ensuring that intent and impact are aligned.
In terms of growth, we’re also seeing more and more talent come into the space, as the demand has only increased.
Cyber insurance is now an enterprise-wide priority, not just an add-on or “IT risk.”
R&I: What’s the most impressive new insurance product that you’ve come across in your work over the past year?
MW: There’s no shortage of new products coming into the market, and they certainly come with a lot of benefits. We are constantly evaluating different strategies in order to find the best products and solutions that will deliver on our requirements and our clients’ needs.
While not a product, I’d argue the most impressive enhancement I’ve seen in the past year has truly been the sharing of knowledge among key stakeholders in the cyber industry. That includes carriers, brokers, clients and vendors — whether it’s a carrier elaborating on its strategy and needs or clients speaking to other like-minded organizations about their policies.
With this knowledge, we’re all helping each other — and that may even mean uncovering a new product that’s proved to be beneficial.
R&I: What key resources do you gravitate to as you continue to refine your craft as a broker?
MW: At Graham, we have some incredible partners. They have been key resources for me as I continue to refine my craft as a broker and cyber risk management consultant.
Whether it’s requesting information about a nuanced claims example, asking a data privacy attorney how things may play out or being able to talk to the London market about new changes in policy language, strategic partners and people are the best resources.
Everyone has dealt with all sorts of security and privacy incidents and claims. While our experiences may be different, we can all learn from each other, with a focus on resiliency.
Every incident or claim is filled with so much knowledge. Let’s continue to share what we’ve learned so we can improve the industry as a whole. &