Would you be really upset if you lost a huge digital library of music, photos and films that you had painstakingly built up over many years at considerable cost? Or if online identity theft ended up costing you thousands?
The answer is almost certainly yes, but new statistics from insurer Policy Expert show just how unprepared many are for the theft, loss or corruption of their digital assets.
Vast majority keep digital ‘libraries’
The data reveals that the vast majority of consumers now have a mix of digital photos, music and videos stored either in ‘the cloud’, such as via Google’s cloud service, or on the hard drive of one or more digital device, such as a laptop, iPad or smartphone.
Over three-quarters (87%) say they have a digital photo library, more than half (56%) store music files and nearly one-in-three (30%) keep a video library of favourite films or TV programmes.
Costly to replace, but one-in-four don’t ‘back up’
Apart from the emotional value these can have, digital libraries might also have cost a small fortune to build up. Favourite albums can each cost around £6 or £7 to download, and books and films similar amounts.
The expense of replacing music libraries alone can run into thousands, but one-in-four (25%) either never back up their files, or ‘don’t know’ if they do or not – which probably means they don’t!
To be fair to UK digital consumers, just over one-in-five (21%) say they back up everything instantly and one-in-seven (14%) do it either every day or week.
Around one-in-ten (10%) only do so once every six months to a year.
Confusion over digital asset insurance
Unfortunately, over half (54%) either don’t know you can buy insurance to cover online and digital assets, or haven’t given it any thought, suggesting they didn’t know about it in the first place.
Without such cover, or at least making sure you can access copies, digital items which have potentially cost thousands to download, create and curate might be lost forever, and without any compensation to pay for replacements.
Identity theft a problem too
And that’s not to mention the increasing problem of identity theft, which can lead to thousands being lost or reputations being ruined, again, sometimes without compensation.
Many would never think about leaving the contents of their homes uninsured, so why not digital assets and identities too?
One-in-three have lost digital assets forever
When over one-in-three (36%) say they have lost photos, music or videos due to theft (2%), accidental damage (10%) or deletion (17%), or technical malfunction (27%), it’s clear that a world of pain awaits many.
Considering that the over-riding concern of one-in-four (25%) is that they couldn’t afford to replace their main digital device, or for one-in-three (32%) that they could have their identity stolen, it’s surprising that many aren’t more conscientious about digital back-ups, or about having the right insurance in place.
Only one-in-ten currently interested in digital cover
In fact, only one-in-ten (10%) say they would consider taking out insurance cover specifically for their digital assets.
It’s clearly a confusing area for many as nearly one-in-three (31%) aren’t sure if they would or not, perhaps not realising that it’s an area household insurance policies don’t usually include.
Many simply not worried
However, for many it’s simply not something they’re too worried about as over half (55%) say they either probably or definitely aren’t interested in taking such cover out.
And yet only a small minority (3%) don’t have any digital assets at all.
As an online insurer and broker, Policy Expert help our customers to compare insurance products and find a policy that’s right for them. Customer care is at the heart of everything we do and we have a dedicated customer service team on hand by phone, email, twitter and instant chat. For more information, you can call our experts on 0330 0600 600 or visit www.policyexpert.co.uk/contact for more ways to reach us.
Published 15th July 2019