Cyber Attacks On The Rise

Ransomware attacks against businesses and incidents that compromise their e-mail systems are on the rise again. They are threatening organizations of all sizes — and may target yours.

Small businesses are quite vulnerable to these types of attacks, as the cyber criminals know that they typically have less sophisticated networks and protection. Accenture reported that nearly 43% of cyber attacks are on small businesses, yet only 14% of these firms are prepared for attacks.

Consider that a cyber attack on a small business can range from minor (less than $1,000) to enormous (more than $650,000), it’s important that your firm put in place safeguards to avoid having operations hampered or private data exposed by hackers.

The cost of cyber attacks is substantial:

  • The average ransom demand is $5.3 million and the average payment is $100,000.
  • 40% of the attackers’ victims are in the U.S.
  • Verizon report said  half of all business e-mail compromise thefts cost more than $50,000.
  • 19% of data breaches start inside organizations – either accidentally or deliberately.

Attack Methods Keep Changing

Here are the new threats that employers must contend with:

  • Encryptionless extortion attacks — These differ from traditional ransomware attacks, in which the criminals seize control of systems and refuse to release them until they receive ransom payments. In an encryptionless attack, they steal an organization’s data and hold it for ransom.
  • Pretexting attacks — Also known as “social engineering,” in these attacks someone poses as a person known to an employee within the targeted organization. They know enough information to appear convincing.
    They request that the recipient perform a routine transaction, such as changing a bank account number for a vendor. The new bank account belongs to the attacker, not the vendor, and the money is gone before the truth is discovered.

You can thwart the criminals.. 

Educate your employees — Regularly update your people . The more your employees know about cyber attacks and how to protect your data, the safer your business will be. Send out regular reminders not to open attachments or click on links in e-mails from people they don’t know or expect.

Implement safe-password practices — Have employees use complicated passwords and change them regularly every 60 to 90 days.

Using security platforms and protocols — This includes installing web application firewalls and using secure payment gateways if you accept credit cards online. Your website hosting company should regularly patch security vulnerabilities, and you should ensure that all computers have antivirus software installed.

Backing up yourl data –  REGULARLY— That includes databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable and payable files

Cyber insurance

Even with protections in place, you still can suffer an attack. If it’s a ransomware attack, your systems may be unusable until the ransom is paid.

Fortunately, cyber insurance can help pay for the associated costs, including:

  • Recovering or replacing lost or stolen data
  • Investigating the incident
  • Notifying regulators and customers of a breach
  • Income lost due to a breach
  • Extortion payments
  • Legal damages
  • Lawsuit and regulatory action defense
  • Fines, fees or penalties (coverage not available in all states)
  • Crisis and public relations management.

Call us ..   The Cyber Marketplace Is open and active.  Let us show you whats available and how affordable they are.

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Summer Workers Comp Claims

Here are a few of the common workers’ comp claims filed in the summer months, and what small businesses can do to help reduce the risk of accidents, injuries and illnesses among employees:

Heat-related illnesses

Outdoor workers and those who work in non-air conditioned spaces are often at risk for a variety of heat-related illnesses, like heat stress and heat exhaustion. The most severe form of heat-related illness is heat stroke, which is a life-threatening emergency. It’s vital that employers provide proper training to employees and supervisors to ensure they understand the dangers of heat-related illnesses and how it can impact their overall health and safety.

A few things employers can do to reduce the amount of heat-related workers’ comp claims include:

Develop and implement an acclimatization plan for new workers to gradually increase their exposure to heat.

Keep workers hydrated by providing plenty of water and fluids throughout their shift.

Schedule frequent breaks and check in on workers to watch for symptoms of heat-related illnesses.

Young or seasonal worker injuries 

Summer not only means a break from the books for teens and college students across the country, but it also represents an opportunity to save some money by picking up a full or part time job.

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), employees less than 18 years old experience an estimated 160,000 work-related injuries and illnesses every summer, with the majority of these injuries occurring within the restaurant industry. These young or new, seasonal workers generally have less experience and training when they enter the workforce and may not understand some of the basic safety procedures designed to prevent injuries on the job.

To reduce workers’ compensation claims in young or seasonal workers over the summer, employers should require all new hires to participate in safety training programs, understand their right to work in a safe environment and ensure these workers are consistently supervised.

Summer business travel

Summer is a busy travel season for both business and pleasure. Employees required to travel abroad need to be aware of any potential risks this travel involves, and how they can best protect themselves. These risks include:

Unsafe drinking water: Employees should be reminded to drink only bottled water or carbonated beverages and avoid ice cubes in their drinks.

Threats of disease outbreaks in the region, such as measles, Zika and malaria.

Not receiving necessary vaccinations in the appropriate amount of time — in some areas of the world, travelers should receive vaccinations six to eight weeks prior to traveling.

Cleanup and restoration from storms or wildfires

Mother Nature can wreak havoc on commercial property, with heavy rains and high winds from storms destroying the exterior of a building, like roofs, signage, gutters and more. And, 2018 was one of the most destructive wildfire seasons to date, with thousands of commercial structures destroyed in the state of California alone.

These acts of nature and the cleanup process involved can also be hazardous to employees and can result in workers’ compensation claims. Therefore, a few of the steps employers should take to prepare for any nature-related incidents include:

Watch the weather reports to stay abreast of any impending severe storms.

Properly prepare the building by securing any lose items outside, moving items away from exterior glass frontage and unplugging electrical equipment.

Develop an emergency action plan to ensure employees have ample time to leave the premises and return home safely.

Following water damage, protect employees from the risk of mold developing by utilizing dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the air.

Keep the area affected ventilated by opening doors and windows.

The slideshow above offers additional tips on how to keep workers safe and avoid the summer’s most common workers’ comp claims.

By: Brad Wilkins loss control manager at AmTrust

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Don’t Look Now, but….

Data breaches happen in every size company (even those with extensive technology security resources). Data breaches in large companies get more publicity but smaller companies have more breaches by far and they can be far more devastating to a small company without the resources of a larger one.

Some large company breach examples:

eBay, Target, Neiman Marcus, Michaels Stores, University of MD, JP Morgan Chase, Adobe, Sony, U.S. Postal Services, Staples, Kmart, Dairy Queen and Home Depot.

• Small businesses can’t afford either the cost of robust IT security systems or the cost of a data breach, which makes it even worse. Risks to small business are significant and include not only loss of confidential information but interruption of business and the ability to service their customers.

• In a 2015 study conducted at a Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS) meeting in New Orleans, nearly 70 percent of businesses said they experienced one or more hacking event in the last year. The study involved large, mid-sized and small businesses.

• The Identity Theft Resource Center reported that there were 781 large data breaches in 2015 (65 per month) involving about 170 million records. Through April of 2016 the same source reported approximately 370 breaches (95 per month). This represents an increase of 46 percent in reported breaches for 2016 versus 2015.

More and more companies are recognizing that their risk level is only as good as their weakest connected partners so they are requiring proof of data breach coverage from vendors that serve them.

So, even if you don’t want to pay for cyber coverage, your ‘A’ list clients may require you to buy the coverage.


If your systems were breached and sensitive date exposed, how would YOU respond?

· Do you have a plan in place?
· Do you have the money to back it up?
· How would you deal with regulators?

Tough questions that demand good answers. Call us for more information on this crucial topic.

PJ 201 945 3100

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Judicial Hell Holes …

Recently, Insurance Business magazine reported on the greatest risk for workplace lawsuits.   Class-action lawsuit expert Gerald Maatman stressed that all companies are potentially at risk for wage and hour suits, however, businesses in some states carry greater liability than others.

Insurance Business revealed the top 5 “judicial hellholes” of 2013, where 72% of the 141 class-action lawsuits heard in state court took place.

The bottom line? California, New York, Florida, New Jersey and Texas Home Health Care Owners need to be sure they are “armed to the teeth”  with Insurance Coverage for

  •  EPLI (Employment Practices)
  • D&O (Directors & Officers)

Individual law systems have turned these states into “judicial hellholes,” where legislation is more favorable toward class-action suits and, therefore, towards potential employment practices or directors and officers lawsuits.

“In these states, the rules are broader and it’s easier to win a suit with collective action. The laws are employee-friendly and have the most generous remedies, particularly for wage and hour”. 

 “Anecdotally, it makes sense that those states experience more lawsuits. It’s like bees to honey.”

In California, where 56 individual lawsuits were filed in 2013, the state system is especially conducive to workplace litigiousness. The American Tort Reform Association even went so far as to call the Golden State “something of a last-stand for a stubborn nuisance of a liability theory.”
“California has lawsuit filings every day.. It is a very anti-employer jurisdiction, which makes insurance coverage almost a necessity.”
Also identified were

  • Florida
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Massachusetts and
  • Pennsylvania

 The prudent thing to do is to buy Employment Practices Liability Insurance &/Or Directors and officers Liability… and then, get the best terms you can for FLSA  (Fair Labor Standard Act) claims.


 Up till now, insurance companies have been reluctant to cover FLSA claims since it is essentially bad record keeping that causes the problem. Essentially a maintenance claim. And if it’s one thing Insurance Companied DON’T LIKE, it’s maintenance claims!

 Because of marketplace pressure, many companies will now offer a ‘sub limit’ for this coverage … a fixed amount that is less than the policy limit.

 So, the short version is…  

Tighten up procedures and buy the insurance.

 Call me, we can help! 

PJ 201 945 3100


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50 Ways to Crush the Things that are Keeping You from Happiness and Success

Entrepreneurs are different from everyone else because they get to make the rules they live by. Trouble is, too many of us still live by rules that other people made—ones that don’t work well and actually keep you from happiness and success.

You need to stretch your envelope and change habits that no longer work for you. I’ve put together a list of 50 “mind-hacks” to replace the the things that don’t work with a whole new way of thinking that is geared to move you towards your goals and a happier, successful life.

To get your copy of my 25 page workbook just send me an email with “50 Ways” in the subject line and your contact info in the body.



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Getting the Lowest Work Comp Cost

Getting the lowest Work Comp costs is NOT Brain Surgery..

 It’s a simple proceedure and we do it EVERY Day.

Right now, there are forces at work that are kicking up your Workers Comp Cost.. Inflating your bills and well, just  ’dipping their hands’ into your pocket.  You don’t know about it because it’s not your business to know.  Your business is Home Health Care!

You’ve been told that you have little or NO control over Workers Comp Cost  AND IT’S JUST NOT SO!

We use a Proprietary 3 Step Method lets you GRAB CONTROL from those people that ‘dip their hands’ into your pocket on a regular basis

Here’s how it’s Done..

#1: We have the rates for EVERY company in the state.. EVERY ONE OF ‘EM.

#2: We use our Comparison Processor and run them through a ‘Matrix’

#3 We take the results and MARKET YOUR ACCOUNT to get BIDS for YOUR business.

Once the numbers are in, we present the results!

After that, it’s IMPERATIVE that you maintain control and avoid COST CREEP..   So, we keep up on things FOR YOU

Here’s the short list of what you can expect:

1. Review Classifications for ‘best use’ determination

2. Review OPEN CLAIMS to assure that they are closed in a timely manner.

3. Review XMOD worksheets for error and correction

4. Prep you/your staff for Premium Audits

5. Review audit worksheets with you fir error and correction

6. File DISPUTED AUDIT notice when needed

7. Handle Certificates of Insurance

8. File CHANGE OF PREMIUM BASIS notice based on return premium audits or projected payroll changes.

9. Provide you with an in-house Certificate Management Program for use with vendors and sub contractors

10. Set up annual review discussions

Call me now… let us get to work for you! 

PJ  201 945 3100                               



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Why do some insurance companies SURCHARGE


Why do some insurance companies SURCHARGE  Your NJ  Workers Comp Premium?

 To a large extent, New Jersey Work comp is controlled.

  • Rates are published by the “Compensation Rating & Inspection Bureau”
  • All companies must use those rates
  • Statistical date is maintained by the NJCRIB

There are certain circumstances that allow for a Surcharge on the premium developed using those rates

Placement in the “Assigned Risk” of Work Comp

If your policy is placed in the NJ Workers Comp Ins Plan (Assigned Risk) there is an AUTOMATIC surcharge of at least 17%    It can be MORE

Insurance Company filed Rate Surcharges

Some insurance companies think they need more money that the filed rates allow.  They ask for (and get) approval for a ‘rate surcharge’ over and above the state filed rates.

Good News.. You have choices!

There are alternatives to surcharged policies.  We deal with several “A” rated insurance companies that are Actively Seeking new Home Health Care Insurance Accounts.

Some of them actually DISCOUNT ….

Call me to find out more 888 312 94-843



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Just What Is “Pay As You Go” Workers Comp??

A relatively new development in Home Health Care Workers Comp Insurance is “ Pay As You Go “ billing.

Simply put:

  • You (or your payroll company) reports your weekly or bi-weekly payroll to the insurance company Then…
  • The company calculates the cost for Workers Comp insurance for that pay period.    And..
  • You “ Pay As You Go”

No More:

  • Large Up Front Deposits
  • Billing / Payment chase
  • Year end audit surprise

It’s a good deal for everyone, and now, YOU can get in on it. We do this every day for New Jersey Home Health Care Agency Owners!

No Set Up Fees…

Feel free to call me about this!

PJ Giannini
201 945 3100

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Why are we here…

NJ Home Health Ins is here to help Home Health Care Agency Owners deal with the confusing (and expensive!) insurance issues they face.

Feel free to contact us any time!


Toll Free: 888 312 9843


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