- A startup is offering insurance to cover hacked Instagram accounts.
- It’ll pay people while it works to recover access to their accounts.
- Social media managers like the concept, but think it’s redundant for most people if they follow good password hygiene.
Having your social media account hacked is no fun, but what if you could insure it just like your house?
An Israel-based startup, Notch, offers insurance for Instagram accounts, starting at $8 a month. The company will pay a calculated amount, based on the account’s activity and engagement, to its customers for every day that they are locked out of their accounts after a hack.
“For some users, Instagram is their livelihood operated like a business, [and] like any other business venture, disruption can cost significant financial and reputation damage,” Joel Ridley, Digital Content Manager at Eskenzi PR and Marketing, told Lifewire. “Losing access to information like this can be incredibly distressing and, in these instances, insurance would be a greatly appreciated safety net.”
Insure Social Presence
Notch's Instagram account insurance uses several metrics to determine the cost of the insurance. The service has a free online tool that'll analyze your account and offer you a quote. The insurance is currently available in Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Tennessee, and Texas.
Social media platforms often hold a host of sensitive and personally identifiable information that can be used as extortion leverage or result in identity theft.
“The plan is to launch nationwide, and we are doing it as quickly as possible,” Rafael Broshi, CEO of Notch, told Lifewire over email. “On June 6th, we launched in 3 states, now we’re live in five, and by the end of July, we’ll be live in seven states.”
Currently, the insurance only covers accounts taken over by attackers, but Broshi said they are hashing out details for an add-on endorsement plan to their policy that'll also cover account suspensions. Also in the pipeline are plans to offer similar protection for other social media platforms, including YouTube, TikTok, and Twitter.
In addition to compensating people after their accounts have been taken over, Notch will also help them regain control.
"We take care of everything we can on our end," assured Broshi. "Think of [Notch] like 24/7 concierge services; if we need the policyholder's help, we'll specifically tell them what to do and how."
Tread With Caution
A monthly payout could make this policy worthwhile for big creators, but there's more to a hacked account than just monetary loss.
"Social media platforms often hold a host of sensitive and personally identifiable information that can be used as extortion leverage or result in identity theft," explained Ridley. "Not to mention any sensitive or intimate content that has not been made public or stored in the archive."
While Ridley appreciates the need for having a safety net, he believes some kinks need to be worked out. "The very nature of Instagram' hacks' is contentious as it could be difficult for users to prove to their insurance providers that they had legitimately been targeted, especially considering the number of people behind the scenes that may have access to a creator's platform."
Ridley isn't convinced that the coverage would benefit most people, but it could be useful for certain high-profile users.
Annie Pei, Digital Account Director at Ditto PR, is a little skeptical as well. “I do believe that influencers and their businesses should be protected, and every effort should be made so that they don’t lose their livelihoods, but I have too many questions about security on this platform,” Pei told Lifewire via email.
Pei believes the idea sounds good on paper, but the platform must have more transparency before they encourage their clients to sign up.
Sofia Kathryn Coon, owner of Sofia Kathryn Communication Strategies, has worked on social accounts and channels for CEOs and businesses for over a decade but hasn’t had any of her accounts hacked. In an email exchange with Lifewire, she said she is old school in that she follows good password hygiene and doesn’t think insurance is something she’d need a budget for.
"I suppose if a company has gone through a hacking, it'd be a worthwhile investment or something they might use for a short time while they get back on their feet, but the average day-to-day accounts really don't need this kind of protection," said Coon. "It may make more sense for A or B list celebs or individuals that would potentially be targeted for their perspective."