Microsoft announces multi-year partnership with cyber insurance firm At-Bay

Starting on October 1, companies in the US that are already Microsoft 365 customers will be eligible "for savings on their At-Bay cyber insurance policy premiums if they implement specific security controls and solutions, including multi-factor authentication and Microsoft Defender for Office 365."

Microsoft unveiled a new partnership with cyber insurance company At-Bay on Wednesday, announcing that it was seeking to help the insurance industry "create superior and data-driven cyber insurance products backed by Microsoft's security solutions."

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At-Bay claimed their insureds are seven times less likely to experience a ransomware incident than the industry average and noted that they provide insights to their customers about ways they can better protect themselves. 

Starting on October 1, companies in the US that are already Microsoft 365 customers will be eligible "for savings on their At-Bay cyber insurance policy premiums if they implement specific security controls and solutions, including multi-factor authentication and Microsoft Defender for Office 365."

Ann Johnson, Microsoft's corporate vice president of security, compliance & identity business development, explained that for cyber insurance to play a meaningful role in overall risk management, buyers and sellers need the benefit of data and clear visibility into what is covered and factors either minimizing or multiplying risk exposure. 

"Microsoft's partnership with At-Bay brings important clarity and decision-making support to the market as organizations everywhere seek a comprehensive way to empower hybrid workforces with stronger, centralized visibility and control over cloud applications boosting security and productivity," Johnson said. 

The company said in a statement that At-Bay's portfolio companies have had their cybersecurity strengthened by certain incentives they provide, including improved policy terms and pricing.

Microsoft said it will work with At-Bay to find other ways customers can limit their risk exposure and proactively address vulnerabilities.

Microsoft noted that it is working with other insurers to protect their customers and reduce the risk of loss, which has grown significantly over the last few years, causing steep increases in premiums. 

"Insurance carriers, agents, reinsurers and brokers are required to understand and assess cybersecurity threats for each of their insureds. With this complexity, insurers are seeking increased visibility into each company's security environment and hygiene to better underwrite new policies," Microsoft said in a statement. 

"To address this, Microsoft is teaming with key insurance partners to offer innovative data-driven cyber insurance products allowing customers to safely share security posture information through platforms like Microsoft 365 and Microsoft security solutions.mAll data and details about a covered company's technology environment will be owned and controlled entirely by that customer, but customers can opt-in to securely share them with providers to receive benefits like enhanced coverage and more competitive premiums." 

At-Bay CEO Rotem Iram said insurance policies are effective tools that help define the cost of certain cybersecurity choices of a company. 

"By offering better pricing to companies that implement stronger controls, we help them understand what matters in security and how best to reduce risk," Iram said. "Working with Microsoft enables us to educate customers on the powerful security controls that exist within Microsoft 365 and reward them for adopting those controls."