Insurance for software contractors and programmers

Business insurance is a multifaceted issue and varies greatly from industry to industry. The software industry is one application where many different types of insurance may be needed to protect your business against malfunctions, hackers even copyright infringement. The software industry has grown like no other in the United Kingdom and some businesses are based entirely online including distributors and consultants. This mix of material and ideas make it very easy to become entangled in legal battles over intellectual rights, compensation or responsibility in the event the product causes loss or damage to a client's system. In the UK, most organizations involved in software at any level carry product liability insurance, also known as defective product insurance for these types of situations.
 Product liability insurance is financial backing for your business in the event that your software or the software you distribute causes damage to another parties equipment. This can come in many forms and can even be brought about be customer service and live assistance where applicable. With the world firmly in the grip of the information age, more and more information is being digitized for storage and day to day operations. Even if your business only distributes the product you may still be at risk if the manufacturer goes out of business. One minor malfunction can have a compounding affect throughout a system and destroy or corrupt records and data. Product liability is usually very specific and more specialized, particularly in cases where legal or financial records may be involved.
 Product liability can be customized and expanded to include more protection for your business at all levels depending on your needs. Extended expense policies can be very effective for software businesses in that it can literally keep operations going in times of crisis. Software commonly has small bugs and glitches that may be fixed as easily as a patch installed, the real problem is getting the patch to the clients without charging them more for a defective product you sent them. Extended expense coverage could provide emergency funds to pay salaries, taxes and debts while the fix is being organized. The policy can even be written to pay the shipping and in extreme cases pay for equipment that may have been damaged beyond repair.
 Another very important aspect of product liability in the software industry is the unfortunate reality of malicious acts by employees. Sometimes an attack or act of intentional neglect can cause the most damage, no one knows the operation like an employee and no one can cause more problems so easily. While insurance cannot stop disgruntled employees from sabotaging products, it can help you recover quickly and effectively when it does happen. Hackers, crackers and viruses abound on the internet and all are looking for the next way to attack someone's system. It is very common for criminals to use the latest software to gain access to private systems for things like identity theft, information theft and more. A simple flaw in the program is all these people need in most cases to infiltrate email, personal files and even financial information.
 Software is so embedded into the daily fabric that it often goes unnoticed until it malfunctions, then it can be the centre of the universe. Statistically speaking, IT and software malfunctions were responsible for more down time in the UK than weather on more than one occasion, making the need for reliability and protection more than obvious. Regardless of the level of involvement, if your business distributes, manufactures or installs software of any kind, you may need to look into a very specialized product liability plan. If your current provider cannot assist you or is not registered in the United Kingdom, you can consult any one of many registered insurers from the list on the UK's Financial Services Authority website.


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