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E-commerce has had a huge impact in Asia even throughout the pandemic. People have been able to buy and purchase products overseas sans a physical store. The requirement of having a brick-and-mortar store has taken a backseat for many small business owners as well as large retail corporations.
And as is the case with anything emerging, the industry’s growth brings with it new risks that may not have existed a decade ago.
The fact that the e-commerce industry is growing at an incredibly fast pace is yet another reason for online retailers to make sure that they are protected from the many risks that can come with such rapid growth. According to recent studies, e-commerce sales increased to $4.058 trillion in 2020 and made up more than 14% of total worldwide spending.
Covid-19 has played a crucial part in this growth with lockdown and physical restrictions that encourage consumers to shop online.
So what are the risks involved?
1. Cybersecurity – e-commerce is one of the most targeted industries of cyber attacks, with 32.4% of all cyberattacks targeting this industry. Ecommerce stores are known to hold highly sensitive information such as a buyers’ credit card information and home address.
Online shopping sites are liable for these types of breaches which can result in millions of dollars worth of lawsuits, especially for large companies. Having the right cyber insurance is a must-have.
2. Product Liability – Any product or service can malfunction and result in some form of injury or accident. Defective products or the lack of hazard warnings are grounds for legal liability even if you’re not the direct manufacturer. Online retailers have to remember that as long as you are part of the distribution chain, you may be deemed responsible.
Some companies have been opting to get insurance called Technology Errors & Omissions Insurance. This type of insurance combines product liability and cyber insurance, therefore addressing incidents involving physical injuries caused by a product, and the unauthorized disclosure of proprietary information, respectively.
Aside from product liability insurance, it’s recommended that companies purchase D&O insurance to have an added cover for directors, officers, and other decision-makers in the company in case of lawsuits.
3. Intellectual Property Issues – Copied designs and the use of copyrighted material (even if one does it unknowingly) can lead to legal problems for e-retailers. In fact, an e-commerce store can face liability related to a third party’s ad that’s seen on its website. A general liability insurance can cover these issues.
If your business keeps and receives shipped goods in a warehouse via a third-party provider, or if you ship your products directly to customers and other distributors, then cargo insurance may also be something to consider. This insurance covers your business from loss of inventory while in storage or shipping.
Need more information about the insurance you need for your e-commerce business? Get in touch with us today.