Mid-America Catastrophe Services

Email Scam Losses May Find Recourse Via Cyber Or Business Interruption Coverage

 Tuesday, January 31, 2023

 JD Supra

Losses arising from email scams are usually covered, if at all, under a company’s crime policy. But a recent decision from The District Court in Minnesota suggests that recourse may also be found under an insured’s cyber or business interruption coverage.

Importantly, the decision suggests that a ‘data breach’ triggering cyber coverage may occur where a bad actor infiltrates and manipulates an insured’s email system.

In Fishbowl Sols., Inc. v. Hanover Ins. Co., 2022 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 200210 (D. Minn. Nov. 3, 2022), a bad actor gained unauthorized access to the email account of Fishbowl’s senior staff accountant, Wendy Williams. The bad actor then created multiple ‘rules’ within Williams’ account that interfered with proper receipt of incoming emails.

Those rules also redirected emails with the words ‘invoice,’ ‘wire transfer’ or ‘payment’ to an email account controlled by the bad actor. Another rule diverted emails from Williams’ inbox to a subfolder and marked them as read.

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