Federation, the Solution for Cyber Security, Efficiency: Part 2

Posted 8/3/2021

On June 10, 2021, panelists at an Accelerate webinar, “SignOn Once: Increase Efficiency and Protect Customer Data,” moderated by Nellie Massoni of Vertafore, discussed a crisis for the insurance industry — the increase in cyber threats and ransom attacks. In our last newsletter, agency owners Mike Foy and Steve Aronson shared observations and advice. In Part 2, they are joined by carrier representatives Toby Plummer of MMG and Jim Rogers of The Hartford.

The panelists conveyed one collective message: As cyber risks increase, agencies and carriers must unite to federate. The industry’s solution is SignOn Once by ID Federation. Read more of what they had to say.

Why SignOn Once?

Rogers shared The Hartford’s perspective as a carrier: “I love to compete on product, price, claims and user experience. I just don’t want to compete on security.” SignOn Once is a collaborative effort represented by all industry sectors for the common good of the independent channel. Rogers offered to share his experience and expertise with any carrier that does not know how to start the federation process. “We’re here to help you,” he said.

Plummer of MMG urged agencies to get involved by communicating their need for SignOn Once to their own carriers. He described MMG’s success as the most recent carrier to go live with SignOn Once: “The rollout has been great. The agent reactions? It’s been fantastic. No more invalid credential message! Enhanced security! It’s been phenomenal for agents.”

Collaborate to achieve the ideal state

Foy of Foy Insurance summarized: “Ideally, I want my employees to have a menu of all of our carriers and be able to point and click and go to MMG or Hartford and not ever need to know the user ID and password that is needed for that point-and-click selection.

“Ideally, you don’t want your users to know their user IDs and passwords. If someone leaves, I disconnect them, and they no longer can get into MMG” or any other participating SignOn Once carrier. “That’s the fear,” Foy said. “How long does it take to disconnect someone if they have a cyber breach?”

Quickly deprovisioning a user is the No. 1 value of SignOn Once, says Aronson of Aronson Insurance, especially if that user moves “to an organization where there are rewards or commissions for growing the book of business, or they want to start their own shop. Yes, [SignOn Once] is much more efficient, but the ability to turn off someone’s access is worth a world to me in feeling that my book of business is secure and safe.”

Help ID Federation help you

Panelists urged their industry colleagues to ask for SignOn Once. Remind your carrier’s marketing rep, said Aronson, “that my staff will place business where it’s easiest to do business. Want more business? Make it easier to do business with you.”

Want to federate for increased security and efficiency? Ask for it. You can use the ID Federation automated letter or contact Irv Kantar, ID Federation business manager. You can reach him at 833.744.6661 or email him. After you have requested SignOn Once from your carriers, Kantar will follow up with them on your behalf.