Augmentt has forged a pact with insurance broker SeedPod Cyber that lets users of its cloud management software help end users get substantial discounts on cyber insurance coverage.
The deal applies to MSPs that run both Augmentt Discover, which automatically inventories all of an organization’s software-as-a-service solutions, and Augmentt Secure, a security policy administration solution for Microsoft 365.
Information collected by those two products enables SeedPod to validate that cyber insurance applicants have security best practices in place. The resulting reduction in premiums can go as high as 40% based on how many recommended safeguards in areas like password management and data protection a business utilizes.
The new arrangement follows an earlier agreement between SeedPod, a managing general insurance agency with an emphasis on cyber insurance and errors and omissions policies for technology companies, and its underwriter that authorized policy discounts for businesses that can prove they use anti-virus software, firewalls, BDR solutions, and other widely deployed systems to secure their networks.
Companies that run cloud-based software must also show that they know all of the software-as-a-service products their employees use, as well as which employees are running which systems, what they’re doing with them, and what practices are in place to keep both the systems and the users secure.
“The real difference is not just do you have the ability, for example, to have MFA turned on,” says Derik Belair, Augmentt’s CEO. “It’s a lot more about do you have a policy? Do you track it? Can you report on it? And can you alert if something was to go wrong? That’s what the insurance company wants to see, not just the intent to secure in SaaS and cloud but the ability to actually prove that you’ve been doing it.”
SeedPod found that while RMM solutions enable MSPs to provide proof with respect to the on-premises portion of the best practices checklist, they typically have little visibility into items on the lower part covering the cloud.
“When they started looking at our products, they discovered that between the two of them, Augmentt Discover and Augmentt Secure, we filled up bottom of that list,” Belair says.
Augmentt for its part, Belair continues, pursued negotiations with SeedPod in response to feedback from members of its partner advisory board frustrated by how hard it is for SMBs to get cyber coverage today and then benefit from it after a breach.
“You’re seeing a lot more claims being denied than ever before,” Belair notes. “That’s very scary for MSPs and their customers.”
Cyber insurance prices in the U.S. rose 110% in the first quarter of 2022, according to insurance broker and risk advisor Marsh. SeedPod expects cyber insurance prices to rise another 50-100 percent in the coming year.
“They deal with a lot of underwriters and they’re seeing the trends,” Belair explains. “Across the board, insurance rates are going up.”
Those price hikes follow similarly massive spikes in global threat activity. A record 71% of organizations were impacted by successful ransomware attacks last year, according to recent data from research and marketing provider CyberEdge Group. That’s up from 55% in 2017.
Augmentt is the latest in a string of vendors to negotiate cyber insurance discounts for its partners. Trend Micro reached a similar deal with insurer Cowbell Cyber in February, for example. IGI CyberLabs, which makes the Nodeware vulnerability monitoring product, announced a Cowbell Cyber deal of its own in March.
Belair hopes to reach agreements with other insurance agencies in the future. “Since starting to work with SeedPod, we’ve been approached by two other companies,” he says. “I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s five or six more of these [deals] over the next six months.”
Augmentt, which officially opened for business in August 2020, was founded by Belair and Gavin Garbutt, former leaders of RMM software pioneer N-able. In addition to Discover and Secure, the company makes systems designed to help MSPs manage cloud applications and backup data in Microsoft 365, Google Workspace, and Salesforce.