This past winter’s Anthem and Premera data breaches, in which hackers accessed the personal information of millions of consumers, has the insurance industry reevaluating its cybersecurity practices. Carriers are trying to gain a better understanding of their data, improve data protection controls, and implement stronger oversight programs to monitor third parties and vendors.

“For many years, insurers did not think they were as high on the priority list for malicious actors as other industries such as banking and retail,” says Adam Thomas, a principal with Deloitte Advisory’s insurance cyber risk services team. The massive healthcare insurance breaches have changed all that: Now, insurance companies realize security issues can turn into quantifiable operational and reputational risks — and the issues are related more to data than to infrastructure.

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