The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team has issued a warning about a newly discovered malware launched by North Korean group Hidden Cobra, also known as Lazarus Group. "These files have the capability to download and install malware, install proxy and Remote-Access Trojans (RATs), connect to command-and-control servers to receive additional instructions, and modify the victim's firewall to allow incoming connections," the US-CERT report notes.
A study by the Union of Concerned Scientists found that "chronic" flooding could be a problem for more than 310,000 US coastal homes by 2045 and nearly 2.4 million by 2100, with $1 trillion in property value at risk. The greatest threat from persistent flooding is in Florida, New York and New Jersey, according to the study.
More than 1,000 lawsuits regarding climate change are currently outstanding worldwide, with governments and big oil companies as targets, Sony Kapoor writes. The plaintiffs in such cases have had few victories, but science linking damage to climate change is improving, and successful lawsuits will set precedents that could translate to more risk and costs for entities that are sued, Kapoor writes.
The National Transportation Safety Board and Tesla are investigating a Model S car that caught fire, which actor Mary McCormack said began while her husband was in traffic in Los Angeles on Friday. Tesla said its initial investigation found that the flames did not affect the car's cabin, and the company said its vehicles are 10 times less likely to catch fire than vehicles that run on gasoline.
A J.D. Power study found that auto insurers' customer satisfaction score rose to a record high 826 out of 1,000, while shopping rates for auto coverage are at a record low. Customers want a combination of digital and offline channels of communication, although "the increasing demand and use of digital self-service options is putting pressure on agents to evolve their value proposition to offer more products and services to help customers with complex needs and risks," said Robert Lajdziak of J.D. Power.
The potential absence of a loss event this year poses the risk that January's reinsurance pricing gains could be wiped out, say Deutsche Bank analysts, who describe the outlook for the sector's pricing as "very bleak." The reinsurance market could soften in 2019, the analysts say, and reinsurers are focusing on underwriting more non-US catastrophe risks.
Parametric insurance could become a more popular option for customers looking to streamline how claims on complex risks are adjusted and paid out, according to a report from Airmic, Marsh and Swiss Re Corporate Solutions. The use of parametric insurance is largely around catastrophe risks in the reinsurance sector, although it is making inroads in the retail, agricultural and travel spaces.
Flooding in the Upper Midwest has resulted in washouts of roads and damage to businesses, and it is blamed for a man's death in Wisconsin. The flooding has also led to dozens of sinkholes in Michigan, where a disaster declaration from Gov. Rick Snyder's office authorizes the National Guard to assist with road repairs in two counties.
Sales of indexed universal life insurance increased 12% in the first quarter compared with Q1 of 2017, and insurers are tweaking products to boost sales further. Among features being added are riders for lifetime income, critical illness and long-term care, as well as flexible premium payments and no-lapse guarantees.
A proposal from the Health Policy Consensus Group, which has members from conservative think tanks, calls for repeal of the Affordable Care Act in August and for state regulation of the health care market. The plan would allow block grants to help low-income people buy coverage and would expand use of health savings accounts.
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