Business risks from technology

Technology has become an integral element of today’s business operations. By embracing and leveraging advances, businesses can gain access to significant opportunities for growth, efficiency and innovation. 

Unfortunately, as businesses large and small increase their reliance on technology, there is an increased risk of predations from cyber criminals. As reported by the Harvard Business Review, the IBM Data Breach Report revealed 83% of organizations experienced more than one data breach during 2022. The 2022 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report indicated the total number of ransomware attacks increased by 13% year over year. 

For companies seeking to protect their sensitive data while also maintaining the trust of clients who have shared their own sensitive data, cybersecurity becomes an increasing concern. 

Cyber insurance, also known as cyber liability insurance or cyber risk insurance, is a type of insurance coverage designed to protect individuals and organizations from financial losses and liabilities arising from cyber-related incidents and data breaches. As both technology and companies’ reliance upon it continue to advance, cyber insurance has become an increasingly essential component of risk management for businesses and individuals alike. 

While it will not eliminate the need for robust cybersecurity measures, it represents a vital adjunct to these activities. Key features of cyber insurance policies will include the following coverages: 

Data Breach Coverage: This aspect of cyber insurance will help to cover costs stemming from the effects of a data breach. These costs will include notifying affected individuals whose data integrity has been compromised by the data breach, investigating the breach and providing credit monitoring services to affected parties. 

Network Security Liability: Cyber insurance can cover legal fees and damages resulting from third-party claims due to network security failures and breaches leading to data theft or unauthorized access by rogue actors. 

Privacy Liability: This coverage addresses claims related to violations of privacy laws, including improper handling of personally identifiable information and confidential data. 

Business Interruption: Cyber insurance could potentially cover losses resulting from a cyber-attack disrupting normal business operations, leading to revenue loss and extra expenses. 

Extortion Coverage: Certain cyber insurance policies will provide coverage for “cyber extortion.” In these instances, cybercriminals will demand payment to prevent or discontinue a cyber-attack upon a targeted company whose web presence and/or digital assets are being held hostage. 

Digital Asset Restoration: This covers expenses related to restoring or recovering data and digital assets lost, damaged, or corrupted as a result of a cyber incident. 

It is important to note cyber insurance policies will vary significantly in terms of coverage limits, exclusions, and specific conditions. Organizations and individuals should carefully review and understand policy details to ensure they align with specific cyber risks and needs.  

It bears repeating cyber insurance is only one aspect of a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy. Robust cybersecurity measures, scheduled risk assessments, staff training and incident response plans are vitally important when it comes to safeguarding against cyber threats. 

While the threat to large and small businesses from malicious cyber actors is not new, it is a complicated bit of business characterized by an evolving and expanding profile. It is therefore advisable to consult with your trusted risk management professionals and cybersecurity experts to make informed decisions about cyber insurance and cybersecurity measures. 


Zach Boyer is an Account Manager at KMRD Partners, Inc., a risk and human capital management consulting and insurance brokerage firm serving clients worldwide. Zach can be reached at 267-482-8486 or [email protected] 



ABEC to provide technology to Eli Lilly’s new plant in Ireland

Bethlehem-based ABEC, a self-described leader in engineered solutions and services for biotech manufacturing, announced that it will deliver multiple custom single run, or CSR, single-use systems to Eli Lilly’s next-generation biopharmaceutical manufacturing plant in Limerick, Ireland.

The facility will feature ABEC’s large-scale CSR bioreactors, and ABEC will also manufacture, test and install large-scale CSR GenMix systems. Equipment deliveries are scheduled for the third quarter of this year.

“ABEC is proud to be partnering with Lilly on this important project,” Scott Pickering, ABEC CEO and chairman, said in a release. “We are pleased that our unique CSR products and customized, flexible approach will support Lilly’s vision for state-of-the-art manufacturing.”

Lilly selected ABEC to support basis of design, or BOD, engineering of the plant’s upstream and downstream processes utilizing ABEC’s CSR technology. The effort leveraged key CSR benefits in scale, performance, customizability and supply chain security to meet Lilly’s design goals.

The customized CSR systems “allow Lilly to significantly leverage their extensive process and operations experience from other plants in their network, supporting rapid startup, high productivity, seamless technology transfer and full regulatory compliance,” the release said.

The CSR bioreactors’ mixing and mass transfer performance will enable Lilly’s high-density cell culture processes. CSR’s GenMix systems will support large scale harvest and purification.

According to the release, the majority of the world’s pharmaceutical and biotech companies are ABEC customers, and many of today’s leading therapies are manufactured by processes and equipment engineered, manufactured, installed and serviced by ABEC.

Paula Wolf is a freelance writer

Agriculture, forestry industry receives highest amount in business loans, study says

A new study reveals that the agriculture and forestry industry receive the highest amount in approved business loans, per employee and establishment.

Mining, quarrying, and oil/gas extraction rank second, while accommodation and food services place third according to the study conducted by Capital on Tap. A business credit card company, Capital on Tap studied the latest census data from January to December 2021 to find the industries receiving the highest amount of business loans.

Hugh Acland, director of Capital of Tap, highlighted the importance of financial support for businesses and in particular, small businesses.

“Many smaller businesses rely on different forms of financial aid: It’s not unusual for companies to draw on a mixture of small business loans, corporate credit cards, and grants in order to get their company off the ground, meet cash flow needs, or expand their operations,” Acland said in a release.

The agriculture and forestry industry heads the list with an average of $419,287 in approved loans per establishment. Together with an average of $64,520 per employee, agriculture and forestry are the primary beneficiary of small business loans, enabling them to significantly boost to the job market.

The mining, quarrying, and oil/gas extraction industry follows with $96,212 in approved loans per establishment and a total of $2,208,058,831.

The accommodation and food services industry ranks third, receiving an average approved loan amount of $51,242 per establishment for a total of $38,200,648,886. Finishing fourth is the education sector, which is averaging $42,840 per establishment, with a total of $4,741,996,532.

Completing the top five is the arts, entertainment, and recreation industry, with $42,580 in approved loans per establishment and an average of $4,207 per employee.

“Depending on the industry, the degree of financing required can vary considerably. The agricultural sector, for instance, needs significant upfront investments in land, equipment, machinery, and technology,” Acland said.

“In contrast, financial and insurance companies that drew on business loans required the lowest level of financing, as they are typically service-based consultancies with low capital requirements.”

Lehigh Valley chip start-up unveils revolutionary semiconductor technology

Bethlehem-based iDEAL Semiconductor, a fabless semiconductor company focused on delivering power efficiency that reduces the carbon footprint, announced Tuesday the general availability of its patented SuperQ technology.

SuperQ can reduce power loss in many applications including data centers, electric vehicles, solar panels, motor drives, medical devices and white goods (such as refrigerators and washing machines). Its higher efficiency provides a more sustainable future.

iDEAL’s engineers and scientists reinvented the power device architecture and delivered a step-function increase in performance. The technology – manufactured using state-of-the-art complementary metal-oxide semiconductor equipment – is based in silicon, which represents 95% of global semiconductor manufacturing capacity, and is forward compatible with future power semiconductor materials.

Through scientific research and engineering at the atomic level, iDEAL has created a novel architecture that “sets the next frontier of performance and debunks the idea that the industry has reached the end of the road for silicon advancement,” a release said.

“Our improvements in silicon rival the improvements offered by other materials, but with silicon’s manufacturability, availability and reliability,” said Mark Granahan, CEO and co-founder of iDEAL Semiconductor. “Through collaborations in the U.S. with Applied Materials and Polar Semiconductor, we have unlocked previously unimaginable performance gains. … With the current global push for a greener future, we are thrilled about the role we play in making products more sustainable while also showcasing what investment in America’s semiconductor industry can accomplish.”

After launching SuperQ, the company plans to aggressively expand its hiring, product proliferation and U.S. manufacturing capacity.

Paula Wolf is a freelance writer