Insurance for Video Game Developers, Designers, & Programmers
Protect your software and hardware business with an insurance plan and risk management advisor. Scroll down to learn more about coverage, pricing, and next steps.
Have you heard of Nimatron? Or Bertie the Brain? You probably haven’t, but these are some of the first video games ever made, back in the 1940s and 50s respectively!
However, while the very first video games were developed in the 40s and 50s, they only reached commercial success in the early 1970s. Over the years, with the transition from arcades to gaming consoles, the popularity of video game development has only grown. So much so that video game development as an industry has had an increase of 14.4% in 2021 and is estimated at $178.73 billion in 2021.
Because of the increase in interest of gaming, there’s an increase of game developers, which means an increase of competition too and subsequently cyber risks. While it might not be a physically demanding or risky occupation, it still comes with its own risks. And it might sound completely outlandish, however game developer insurance is a thing and a much needed one at that. But why is it so?
Although most people fail to see it, insurance is more or less essential for any occupation. No matter which policy you choose to buy or for which industry, the insurance is here to protect you from unwanted situations. It might not seem relevant or mch needed, but game developer insurance still finds its practicaly use. On first thought, it seems like this is the perfect job. Game developers work in front of a computer and the risk, in this case, is little to non-existent. People will say that nothing can happen while sitting in front of a PC except maybe back pain and incorrect body posture, but like any other job, it has risks. In this case, game developers are protected from unwanted third-party threats that might cost them their job or their ongoing projects.
Since game developers work over the internet, there’s a never-ending threat of viruses, hacks, malware, ransomware, and so on. Because developing games is unimaginable without the internet, the developer in question must be insured for such attacks in any way. This is known as Cyber security or insurance and protects your data from online attacks of any kind.
Cyber insurance is one of the reasons why game developers buy security policies, as protection is what comes first.
To better understand what type of game developer insurance would be suitable, it’s important to understand what are the risks. Once you have a clear grasp of the potential risks in the game developer industry, the better you will understand the coverage that insurance companies offer and the value of each one.
Insurance is certainly not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing, but most game development operations have similar risks. Below are the top 3 insurance policies every gaming business should have:
Cyber Liability & Data Breach
We start off with the most common insurance called Cyber. This is the basic insurance for video game development, as it covers all main aspects of security measures. The policy contains insurance protection from external threats like viruses, ransomware, malware, hacking, and so on. This type of insurance is essential if you handle finances online, which are often open to attacks, or if you work with user data. Both of these segments are open to online attacks and are a top priority to protect them.
If you’re looking to grab the Cyber deal for game developer insurance, make sure to ask for all additional features to be included in the policy. The coverage for the basic package may vary as it depends on data sensitivity, and how much you’re exposed to external parties. The more sensitive data you handle, the price and protection for the policy will be higher, as expected.
ADVISOR TIP: If the package has a wider coverage of the policy, always check if it’s applicable to your line of work. You don’t want to have something that is no longer in use or isn’t applicable in your company.
Product & Public Liability
The other type of video game developer insurance is the liability one. Game companies are known to have little-to-no contact with the customers, so the risks for the insurance are small. The policy is usually used if you’re making a physical product, such as Virtual Reality glasses but can still apply to game development as well. In general, video games are safe, and nothing bad can occur while playing. But, if you’re making a VR game, it requires space for movement when you use it, so one might injure themselves by running into a wall.
If some of the users of the VR get injured by hitting a wall or trips and falls, that person could blame you for damage or injury.
The game developer can get hit the hardest because they are the ones creating the game or the VR. This option can be a lifesaver to avoid any damage while working as a game developer.
Workers Compensation & Employers Liability
The following insurance policy type is legally required for most companies, and it covers the legal cost of any workplace incident. This type of insurance is used for an entire company, and it's not an individual one. Since the biggest game developers work in prominent companies, this is a must-have insurance. No matter if incidents in this industry are rare, they can still occur. This kind of insurance coverage is cheap and affordable for most game development companies.
The other segment of this policy is the Employer's General Liability. This insurance plan covers anything from injuries to property damage and medical payments, among others. As the name suggests, it’s a general liability insurance, and while it’s not required by law, any game development company can benefit from it.
- Employment Practices Liability: protects your business from sexual harassment, wrongful termination, and other employment claims.
- Directors & Officers Insurance: protects the personal assets of directors, officers, and other executives if they are sued for a bad decision.
- Commercial Property: protects things like computers, equipment, buildings, improvements, and more.
- Commercial Umbrella: lifts the primary liability coverage by $1mil to $20mil
- Key Man Insurance: pays a death benefit to the business if something happens to an essential person (CTO for example)
Getting insurance is one thing, but paying for it is another altogether. The prices for game development insurance are much lower when compared to conventional insurance policies. Insurance premiums for game development plans can range somewhere between $750 to $2,000 per year for about 1 million in liability coverage. The insurance price here isn’t fixed and can changed depending on few factors which are presented below:
- General aggregate limit
- The total number of employed people
- The company’s location
- Per-Occurrence limit
- The deductible that you should pay
Because this is a new and uprising industry, people may expect the prices to go up, as there are more game developers than ever. If this is the case, game developer insurance will surely become popular in the industry, without a doubt. A great insurance partner will ensure you are getting best coverage and rates at the lowest prices.
Today, there are countless insurance companies that can help you with anything, no matter the profession or the industry. When talking about game developer insurance, getting the insurance you need can be equal parts difficult and easy.
You can find many companies that will offer at least some policy for video game developers, with a variety of security protocols in it. The hard part is that insurance for video game development is a relatively new product, so you might have a hard time finding the right one with sufficient coverage.
Game development is not risky as other jobs might appear to be, but it still holds risks of online attacks, hacks, and losing data.
You deserve a partner that understands your risk.
The insurance for game developers is not without its risk. Before you move on to grab one insurance package, you must get familiar with the risks. The best way to understand the risks is to hire a broker who is specialized in your industry. The broker is well informed of the risks and can negotiate the deal for you, for the best price. Most importantly, they will work with underwriters to ensure the insurer understands your business and the risks involved.
The process to get insurance is usually an easy and straightforward process. At the end of the day, our job as brokers and advisors is to educate you on what everything means and collect the information to educate underwriting. Some traditional businesses can move through the process faster as a lot of underwriting is supported by artificial intelligence, but most policies today will be reviewed by an actual person.
The standard process to produce quotes for your startup is as follows:
- Introduction with your advisor: this can be a quick phone call, email, video conference or in person meeting. You'll decide if you enjoy the advisor and trust their advice. This is also where you'll be able to ask questions, provide information about your operation, and go over the process to get insured.
- Data Collection and Underwriting: this is where you'll get into the fine details about underwriting questions and information that will be necessary to engage the insurance market. You'll be able to chose from filling out PDF's, going through our smart-form technology, or provide it all over the phone, email, or in person.
- Quote Review: once your advisor has the information needed for underwriting, they will work with the insurance market to produce quotes. This can take a day or up to a week, depending on the time and operation.
- Finalize Coverage: here you'll decide the coverage to move forward with. Final steps include signed documents, payment, and selecting a specific start date.
Advisor Tip: take 5 minutes out of your day and speak with one of our advisors. We'll learn about your operations, provide estimates for annual premiums, and go over the process to get your business covered.
We could have our algorithm give you a quote in 10 minutes. But your business deserves better than that. You deserve a dedicated insurance advisor and service team who knows how to manage complex risk.
Your personal insurance advisor will negotiate the best coverage, at the best rate, from the best insurance carriers. Because anything less wouldn’t be acceptable.
Think of us like your personal risk management concierge. The godparents to your business. Call, email, text, DM... we’re here whenever you need us.
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