COVID-19 FAQs

Everyone is experiencing change.

If the day to day of your business is looking a little or a lot different, we hope those changes aren’t causing too many disruptions. To help you get through this uncertain time, we’ve put together the FAQs we’ve received since this all began.

We understand that due to the ongoing restrictions and circumstances surrounding COVID-19, many businesses are feeling the impact of forced closures or social distancing measures. Please get in touch with your Account Manager so we can discuss what options are available and suitable to your needs at this time.

Unfortunately, due to the uncertainty of this time, there is an opportunity to exploit the uncertainties and vulnerabilities of businesses.

Commonly referred to as ‘bad actors’, a cybersecurity adversary that is interested in attacking IT systems, these people are creating websites that appear to contain information about COVID-19, but are actually designed to either install malicious software or steal personal information.

The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) has observed “thousands of COVID-19-related websites being registered” within the last few weeks.

In addition to this, bad actors are creating socially engineered scams designed to look like a text message or email from a legitimate body, such as Australia Post or the Government with an attachment or link that contains malware, designed to attack your system and again, steal personal information.

With many employees also now working remotely from home, hackers are looking to exploit any potential vulnerabilities in the systems being used, meaning that risk management and secure networks are a priority.

So, what can you do?

We encourage all businesses to firstly discuss any additional security measures that can be implemented with your IT provider. These may include:

  • Ensure your business has up to date virus security & firewalls
  • Implement two-factor authentication all essential services such as email, bank and social media accounts if you don’t already have this in place.
  • Use email, SMS or social media providers that offer spam and message scanning.
  • Delete any emails or text messages that you are uncertain of. Use sources such as the organisation’s mobile phone app, web site or social media page to verify the message. Do not open the link or attachment before verifying the legitimacy of the message.
  • Ensure there are risk management processes in place for work devices, laptops and mobile phones.
  • Ensure that you, your staff and stakeholders are informed and educated about good cybersecurity practices, particularly in relation to common threats such as detecting socially-engineered messages.

Please also get in touch with your Account Manager to discuss any concerns you may have, so we can provide you with resources and information to assist.

In respect to WA legislation, workers are generally covered for workers’ compensation when they are working from home. Whether a worker is entitled to compensation for an injury suffered whilst working from home will depend on whether the injury arose out of or in the course of employment or whilst the worker is acting under the employer’s instructions.

Each claim is considered on its individual merits, having regard to factual and medical circumstances and relevant evidence.

Due to this, it is highly recommended that Employers continue to ensure that safe working environments are provided to your employees, this can take the form of requiring photos of home workstations or virtual ergonomic assessments.  It is also encouraged to maintain regular communication and check in with your employees.

Insurance programs are, by nature, tailored to individual business needs. Therefore the cover afforded under your policies is dependent upon your individual circumstances and the type of covers we have arranged on your behalf.

However, in general, there are certain policies that have a standard market approach. These are:-

Business Interruption Insurance

As a standard within the market, the majority of insurers have a clause under their policy which excludes any claims arising from a notifiable disease under the Quarantine Act 1908 (Cth), which has been updated with changes in legislation to the Biosecurity Act 2015 (Cth).

As of the end of January 2020, the Biosecurity act noted Human coronavirus with pandemic potential as a listed disease and therefore, unfortunately there is no cover provided for interruption of a business due to the coronavirus.

More detailed information on this can be found here.

Travel Insurance

 On 24 March 2020, Scott Morrison announced a ban on Australians travelling overseas under the Biosecurity Act 2015. Therefore, no overseas travel is permitted. In some cases, interstate travel is also banned.

If you have an upcoming trip booked that you need to cancel, there may be cover for this under your policy. Cover will depend on when the trip was booked and if the country had any travel warnings in place at the time of booking.

Please get in contact with your Account Manager to discuss your queries, and we can talk you through any potential cover or exclusions that may apply to your program.

Firstly, please get in contact with your Account Manager and advise them prior to your premises becoming unoccupied, as we will need to notify your insurer of this as a matter of priority.

We would recommend where possible that someone still frequents the premises to check on the building. Maintenance of the premises needs to be maintained during this period also.

Some handy tips for unoccupied buildings are:

  • Isolate non-essential services (gas, water and electricity). Essential services, such as fire and security systems must not be isolated.
  • Check all building and site access points to ensure they have been secured. Also, check that all security contact information is current and up to date.
  • Remove all money from the premises.
  • Remove all external waste and ensure all waste bins are at least 10 metres from the building or have a lockable lid.
  • Consider relocating high-value equipment and products to more secure facilities.

 

If you have any queries, please get in touch and we can talk you through these.

Handy Links