About Us Our Admitted Products Our E&S Products COVID Update

Keeping up with evolving small business risks

Keeping up with evolving small business risks

How to help clients weather the new risk landscape

Businesses pivoting to survive the pandemic are seeing exposure to a host of new risks. But risk management implications have not been top of mind for them. Now is the moment to step up as a risk management partner and make sure clients are fully covered. These features of the new small business landscape point to potential gaps in coverage your clients might be facing.

Shifting business models

Everywhere in the world, restaurants and cafés with enough space and staffing moved dining outdoors. As winter nears, there is the risk of liability exposure spurred by the use of outdoor space heaters to accommodate outdoor seating. Many food and beverage businesses are also ramping up delivery services to meet the spike in demand for takeout, which opens them up to new vehicle and driver risks.

Reduced operations and smaller teams

Businesses of all kinds — in retail, hospitality and manufacturing to name just a few — have had to pare down operations, reduce hours and endure shutdowns. Businesses that are opening back up face new risks, such as a potential increase in workplace injury and the reality of extended leaves of absence associated with burnout. Those that have had to close their doors for good may leave commercial properties exposed to vandalism and theft.

New worker safety exposures

To stay in the game, manufacturers have had to retrofit premises to accommodate social distancing. While intended to protect worker safety, these new configurations are a potential source of worker injury. Some businesses also modified their product offerings to keep pace with new demands – but in the hurry to pivot the business, they may not have considered new liability risks associated with certain products or production methods.

Remote work and online business

Most businesses went at least partly virtual and still offer employees the option to work from home. The fallout from this exposure was nearly immediate, as cyber criminals took advantage of the lack of digital security and launched a slew of costly attacks. The FBI reported a 440% jump in cyber attacks at the onset of the pandemic. And while small businesses tend to think they are immune, 43% of cyber crimes target small businesses, mostly in the form of ransomware or malware attacks. (Here’s how you can sell cyber coverage to SMBs.)

Liquor liability exposures

Some businesses were permitted to make alcoholic beverages available for takeout. While this may have been a big boon for customers cooped up at home, it adds another dimension of risk to liquor liability that many businesses may be overlooking.


To get a quote, log in to the MOUS® rater, select Quick Quotes then click Cyber Risk Quote.


Back to Newsletter     < Previous Article     Next Article >