Posts Tagged risk

Risk adapts

Risk has a way of changing and adapting to your risk management strategies. Risk is like water looking for the weak seam to flow through and produce a leak. Water is not being an evil conscious entity, that is just the nature water. And that is the nature of risk as well. It will adapt and change and will find the cracks in your risk management system.



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Risk 2.0 – The week in links 9/24/2010

  • What’s Facebook worth? Some valuations now put it ahead of big names like RIM, Starbucks, Dell, Yahoo, and others.
  • Hadyn Shaughnessy discusses semantic clustering and illustrates how it can be used to form a high-level picture of Web 2.0 conversations. It looks like a case of ecosystems talking about ecosystems.
  • Chris F. Masse, vigilant prediction market blogger, thinks that they may be not be that useful for solving real world problems.

This shift toward increased collaboration is apparent, even as enterprises emerge from the economic downturn. In fact, 65% of organizations now support at least one Web 2.0 technology for internal or external collaboration and communication purposes.

  • Riva Richmond of the WSJ lists three ways companies can use location-based social media. To date, I haven’t heard about any insurers, banks, or other regulated financial institutions using this type of social media. (If you have, let me know.)
  • The perils of tweeting away from the nest continue to get attention. One UK insurer recently issued a warning to customers that they may be increasing their risks of being robbed if they announce their absence from home on social networks. Time will tell if these warning shots are followed by premium hikes.

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What role will actuaries and risk analysts play in virtual economies?

In August, Google acquired a social currency company called Jambool.

“Social currency,” you ask? Here’s a little bit from the press release:

Social Gold has grown by leaps and bounds since it went live in 2008. In the first half of 2010, we’ve processed more than double the entire payment volume we processed in all of 2009. And we’ve welcomed hundreds of developers to our platform. The fact that our highest revenue day was in the last week attests to the continued growth of online gaming.

Our vision is to build world-class products that help developers manage and monetize their virtual economies across the globe. When the opportunity arose to join forces with Google to execute against this vision, we couldn’t pass it up. We are thrilled to bring the Social Gold platform to Google’s global users. And we invite you – our customers, partners, and friends – to continue on the journey with us.

The fact that Google acquired Jambool could be a telling indicator. It likely means that Google—one of the biggest tech powerhouses on the planet and arguably the controler of the largest information hub in the world—believes that social currencies have promise.

As online gaming, virtual worlds, and other virtual experiences become increasingly popular, it makes sense that companies like Jambool would step in to help create mediums of exchange in these new worlds.

It’s impossible to say where all this is headed, but just imagine for a moment that large-scale virtual economies emerge, and virtual goods and services are traded in high-volume, complex markets.

Who will analyze the risks in these new economies?

The skill set of actuaries and other risk professionals should extend well in these new virtual spaces.

Some would argue that our own, “real” currency is already virtual.  And in many ways it is. So don’t be too quick to write off these “realities.” Instead, think about how you can play a role.

Please share your thoughts on virtual economies in the comments.

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Risk + 2.0: The week in links 6/18/2010

Another week of articles on collaboration, social media, and risk…

Cisco Speeds Highly Secure Business Productivity With Enterprise Collaboration Software Solutions

This could be a peek at the coming generation of Enterprise 2.0 software:

Cisco announced that Cisco Quad, an enterprise collaboration platform, will be available later this year via native iPad and iPhone
applications. Cisco also unveiled a new Cisco Prosumer Video solution which integrates Cisco FocalPoint, an online video workspace, with a business-class Cisco Flip MinoPRO camcorder. Finally, Cisco announced that Cisco WebEx Connect IM is now available on any supported browser.


Together, these three collaboration solutions offer workers a highly
secure, manageable collaborative environment with video, real time
instant messaging (IM) and social networking capabilities.

Life Insurance Producers Not Seeing Social Media Benefits

A survey indicates that

  • 70% of life insurance producers use at least one social media site
  • 14% believe that social networks have generated word-of-mouth-type leads
  • 11% believe social networks give them more client opportunities
  • 91% of producers that use social media for business are using Facebook to communicate with customers; only 22% of these are corrected to their carriers

Crafting a social media policy

Because social media is unchartered territory for most companies, many people don’t have an instinctive sense of the right and wrong ways to use it. Social networking users can easily introduce and spread malware to others and most of the time they don’t realize they are doing it. A social media policy educates employees about your expectations for their behavior. It also gives an indication of your company culture and work environment.

The article goes on to discuss guidelines for creating a social media policy, risks involved, and upside.

It’s OK to confront the computer critics: Bad reviews in social media should be addressed, resolved

Several social media experts weigh in on how to handle negative social media comments constructively.

Why you’ll use Foursquare

If Twitter was the social media king of 2009, Foursquare is definitely the mayor of 2010. I have not personally started using Foursquare, but I can clearly see the benefits for businesses that seek to draw customers to a physical location repeatedly. I don’t know of any insurers who have explored Foursquare yet, but I’m sure it has potential for marketing channels where potential clients are met at a physical location. Banks maybe?

Social Media Do’s & Don’ts for the Insurance & Financial Services Marketplace

The Insurance Marketplace Standards Association (IMSA) “announced that it has expanded its efforts to provide compliant social media guidance and resources with a new initiative to develop supervision and monitoring guidelines for social media use.”

LinkedIn communications at center of unprecedented lawsuit

There are few, if any, legal precedents that govern social media use. That may be changing soon.

In a first-of-its kind lawsuit, an IT staffing firm has accused one of its former employees of violating the terms of her noncompete agreement through her conduct on LinkedIn.


The lawsuit raises the interesting legal question of whether the mere act of connecting with other professionals on a social networking site constitute a violation of noncompete and nonsolicitation contracts.

How CEOs are Using Social Media for Real Results

A rundown of several ways that CEOs can benefit from social media use:

  1. Building Marketing and Public Relations Exposure
  2. Turning Marketing Opportunities into Sales
  3. Staying Connected to Future Employees
  4. Customer Engagement

The LORD and Risk Management

One actuary’s clever take on the BP oil spill from a risk management perspective.

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Computerworld: BP, in crisis mode, misses social networking target


Not surprisingly, BP has taken a public thrashing for not just the environmental and economic disaster but also for not being more forthcoming with the public about the problem. And while it could have used social media sites like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to report on the problem and what it was doing to stem the flow and ease the damage, it has largely missed that opportunity.

We will probably learn some valuable lessons about risk management, public relations, and who knows what else from BP’s crisis, which is now fully a crisis for many more.

We live in a time when people crave and expect information. Even if it’s bad news, people want the truth. That’s where social media can help in a crisis such as this.

We can’t prevent every disaster, but we can get better at dealing with them.

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