They are now working with American federal legislators to help to combat the evolving nature of data breaches.
State insurance commissioners have announced that they will be working in partnership with federal legislators in order to try to improve defenses against the damage being caused by the rapid evolution of cyber threats.
At the same time, these industry regulators aren’t seeking to adopt new national regulations or legislation over their own authority.
The insurance commissioners do want to try to combat the increasing threat from cyber attacks and data breaches, but not by implementing regulations or laws that would pre-empt their own authority. This, according to an announcement made by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
Monica Lindeen, the president of NAIC and the Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance explained at the 2015 fall meeting, at an open session, that “Cyber security is not just an IT issue.” She stated that “Data breaches strike at the core of what insurance does: protect individuals when they are most vulnerable.”
The insurance commissioners are hoping to place more effective strategies into position to protect the U.S. financial infrastructure.
NAIC is working with financial regulators because they recognize that the threat and losses caused by cyber attacks and data breaches isn’t something that stops at the insurance industry. The Obama administration and Congress are also entering into these efforts with financial regulators and NAIC in order to help to pinpoint specific forms of threats in order to be able to come up with the right strategies for keeping the country’s financial infrastructure safe.
Lindeen said that it is very important that the insurance commissioners work alongside Congress for identifying and developing the right responses to cyber attacks and data breaches. At the moment, NAIC is not being held back by federal regulations and that leaves the door open for all levels to work together for the greatest possible effect and benefit. Though Lindeen admits that there is potential of advantages from cross-sector minimum standards, the preference is to keep the states free to act freely with their own enforcement powers, which has more potential for benefit than implementing federal standards.