by Adam Abresch

Let’s face it – you can’t turn on the news without hearing about another high-profile cyber attack. But, if you think it only happens to the ‘big guys,’ you’re wrong.

Actually, healthcare organizations can usually be found at the top of any hacker’s hit list since the data is so much more valuable than payment cards.

Due to this high-risk exposure, the marketplace has started to customize cyber coverage specifically for healthcare-related business.

Not to mention, these four very good reasons to add it, and fast!

  • Cyber exposures have (and will continue to) become very complex
  • Organizations could be at risk for a full limit loss, so an independent limit will mitigate that risk
  • It’s necessary to have 24/7 legal and communication expertise available to help minimize the loss
  • A surplus lines cyber policy will evolve as cyber risk continues to broaden

Now, more than ever, healthcare businesses must look into a dedicated cyber policy to protect their assets.

Learn more in Will Your Healthcare Facility Survive a Data Breach? To find out more about Cyber Risk  call Adam Abresch, Vice President of Cyber Risk at 516.823.3101 or email 

by Gary Castle

NEENAH, Wis. (May 8, 2018) – Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group recognized its top agencies for their expertise in jewelers block insurance during JM Summit, an annual sales conference.

Agencies were named to the President’s Club in recognition of their efforts to serve Jewelers Mutual policyholders.

“Jewelers block policies are a cornerstone of Jewelers Mutual’s success,” said Scott Murphy, president and CEO of Jewelers Mutual. “Our success as a company is a direct result of the dedication and consistency of our top agencies and producers.”


At the annual awards ceremony, The Signature B&B Companies were honored to have Gary Castle and Wendy Goldberg accept their award with President and CEO of Jewelers Mutual, Scott Murphy.

This is the 5th year in a row that The Signature B&B Companies have been named to the Jewelers Mutual President’s Club.

by Signature B&B Companies

For 25 years, Peak Performance Physical Therapy, an outpatient orthopedic rehabilitation and fitness center, has served Nassau County New York area now with four locations and 21 physical therapists.


Their primary focus is on complete outpatient orthopedic and sports physical therapy, but what makes them unique is their specializations in spine and fitness programs; gait, balance and vestibuler; and aquatic physical therapy.

“Having the broad spectrum of specialties of programs that we provide under one outpatient hood is something that is unique to this area,” said Joe Sullivan, owner of Peak Performance Physical Therapy. “So many lives have been changed due to the positive based work we do.”


Peak Performance had grown from just four people to more than 130 people in four locations and was spending a great deal of time and energy on managing many separate insurance policies.

“We spent a lot of our energy focusing on an area that’s not our expertise,” said Sullivan. “We needed a solution that allowed us to focus on what we need to do to deliver good care and run the complexities of the business we’re in.”

They were challenged by the same issues that challenge any business.

“Our biggest challenge is time,” said Sullivan. “The balancing act of being an efficient, productive practice AND being an efficient, productive business is tough. Balancing delivery of care, talent attraction and everything else while trying to be profitable.”


So, they turned to The Signature B&B Companies.

“We wanted a resource to take a holistic look at our coverage, as well as how our business was running and actually make some forecasts so we could move forward with our growth,” said Sullivan. “Rather than being reactive we wanted to be more proactive.”


After just one meeting with Signature they saw value in their single-source, full-service broker approach.

“Signature sat down and looked at our overall portfolio and not only saw avenues for us to save considerably, but also where we were quite redundant in our coverage,” said Sullivan.

Peak Performance saved $40,000 on their medical professional liability policy freeing up money to purchase even more protection that included cyber, EPL and inland marine.

Beyond the cost and time savings, they have also seen the long-term value of the relationship with Signature.

“Having dealt with a lot of professionals like legal and accounting, when you start off with people you see that often their interest is in the short term,” said Sullivan. “With Signature, they’ve been very good about saying, ‘Let’s talk about how we,’ … they probably could have sold us more expensive policies that would’ve helped them in the short term, but would have missed the mark on our longer term development.”

Sullivan added, “Signature gets it, because they understand that we’ll be a healthier business that’s going to need their services even more in the future rather than getting sold something short term that’s not going to help us.”

Through all this, Peak Performance has also been able to enhance patient care.

“If we’re not spending time and energy focusing on our insurance policies, then we’re focused on developing and attracting new talent, grooming them, training them, teaching them how to be better therapists and caregivers, said Sullivan. “We’re now focused more on what gives us net improvement in our practice rather than dealing with issues that slow us down.”

To learn more, call Julie Shumer at 516.240.8872 or email If you’d like a quote, please complete this quick form.

by Peter Schapero

I get asked all the time what makes The Signature B&B Companies unique in this increasingly crowded, confusing marketplace.

My response is simple. Although we are full-service insurance generalists, we also have a number of specialized practice groups that offer coverages and risk management insight that others can’t.

Additionally, we have tremendous relationships with carriers and insurance companies allowing us to negotiate terms, conditions and pricing on coverages that most brokers don’t even know exist.

How the New York Med Mal Environment Benefits You

Let’s take our specialty in medical professional liability insurance. It’s been dominated by two carriers for the last 30 or 40 years. And they’ve struggled.

Now, a number of carriers have come into the marketplace providing terms, conditions and pricing that’s literally shaking up the industry and physicians, practices and healthcare facilities have noticed and have started to move.

What’s interesting is that those two players were mostly direct writers, meaning they wrote directly with clients and medical practices.

However, these new carriers are working with agents and brokers. When your agent or broker is working with an insurance company, you’re not tied to that direct writer. In many cases, the insureds interests and the direct writers interests aren’t necessarily aligned. This can result in the carrier’s inane ability to negotiate claims in their best interest, not he insureds.

I believe that when you work with an independent insurance agent, they have your best interest at heart. And when you work with a specialized independent writer like Signature B&B, that’s exactly what happens.

To learn more how The Signature B&B Companies can keep your best interest at heart, contact Julie Shumer at 516.240.8872 or email To get a no-obligation risk assessment, complete this quick form and we’ll get you scheduled.

by Signature B&B Companies

A medical practice faces a variety of different risk exposures than the average commercial business.

In order to achieve maximum cost savings and protection, healthcare organizations require a specialized agency that possesses in-depth experience not only in commercial risk coverages, but also medical professional liability exposures.


The Signature B&B Companies’ (SBB) healthcare client Peak Performance Physical Therapy is a perfect example. We were able to restructure their medical malpractice protection and create more efficient commercial coverages for a combined total savings of $40,000.

Benefits of a Full-Service Agency Approach

We evaluate the landscape of a client’s location, as well as their comfort zone and look for ways to educate, provide resources and identify customized services that may have been overlooked by other agencies.

It’s about taking the time to understand a client’s business goals and how we can create operational efficiencies while also taking into account various state and federal requirements, potential cyber risks and employment practice liability exposures.

If you’re a healthcare practice or medical professional, now is the time to think differently about your coverages by allowing a full-service agency to identify practice exposures that will not only provide peace of mind, but also cost-saving opportunities that will allow you to reinvest in your medical practice.

To learn more, please complete this quick form.

by Signature B&B Companies

Southern Arizona Anesthesia (SAA) is an 80 physician group practice in Tucson, Arizona and the largest independent group practice in Arizona.

“We’re unique in that we are an all physician model group with an emphasis on fair and egalitarian practices,” said Dr. David Joseph, CEO of SAA. “Our ability to work through challenges has allowed us to become stronger and more unified over the years.”

As a result, they’ve grown from just eight physicians to more than 80 in the last 32 years attracting anesthesiologists from top residency programs across the country.

They also credit their ability to track data. “In the earlier years, the data driven portion was really focused on financial metrics, on knowing everything about ourselves and the hospital environments,” said Joseph. “More recently we’ve looked at quality metrics and compared them on a national level.”


“For many years we were happy with the coverage we had,” said Joseph. “We had great rates compared to everybody else in the state. We were paying less, well under half of what the average anesthesiologist in the state was paying.”

Until they met a new broker, Julie Shumer. Armed with SAA’ data, she was convinced she could present something that was even more innovative.


Southern Arizona Anesthesia saved more than $168,000 plus received custom retro plan pay dividends to the group during their favorable loss years.

“We were not aware that there were additional savings out there,” said Joseph. “But she came back with something that was vastly superior to what we had resulting in a retro-program that gave us a rebate based on our loss runs. It saved us a tremendous amount of money.”

But the support didn’t stop there.

“Over the years, she has become a true asset to our company,” said Joseph. “She is someone that I trust and know that I can go to with pretty much any insurance question and she’ll get the answer back to me.”

Shumer added, “At the core we are more concerned with building a long-term partnership with clients ensuring they know that we will fight harder than any other broker to help them save maximum dollars all while reducing risk.

Beyond the broker relationship, SAA relies heavily on Shumer and The Signature B&B Companies to help them stay on top of constantly evolving healthcare changes.

“You’ll be halfway through the year before you even know what rules have changed especially with so many patients shifting into Medicare, which for some specialties is great, but for anesthesiologists MediCare pays 20- to 25-percent of commercial rates so that’s a big problem for us,” said Joseph.

SAA has been loyal client of Shumber for more than 10 years.

When asked why he continues his working relationship with Shumer and The Signature B&B Companies he said, “Unfortunately, the way the insurance industry is set up, there’s a disincentive for a lot of brokers to fight for their client and try and reduce the premiums because that reduces their commissions.”

“So finding someone who had both the integrity to really bring forth a unique proposal and industry knowledge and expertise to come up with out of the box creative programs was extremely helpful,” said Joseph.

To learn more, call Julie Shumer at 516.240.8872 or email If you’d like a quote, please complete this quick form.

by Signature B&B Companies

Larry P. Roberts MDPC is a full-service medical facility specialized in urology unique in that it is equipped with a certified ambulatory surgery center with board-certified anesthesiologists.

“I’ve evolved into a full-service office setting where I can do ambulatory procedures in my office,” says Dr. Larry Roberts. “That is the major change that has taken place over the past few years.”

Dr. Roberts needed a progressive insurance solution that would flex and grow with his constantly changing practice.

“My relationship with The Signature B&B Companies (SBB) has evolved over the last 20 years and they have always been able to structure and change my coverage to accommodate me.”

Evolved so much that he now has a variety of coverages through SBB.

“They have been exceptional from the point of view of their availability, their devotion to my coverage both professionally and personally,” said Dr. Roberts.

“They handle many of my policies including home, auto and all kinds of insurance in addition to my medical malpractice.”

When asked about the best part of working with SBB he said, “They have always been exceptional through Marcy Ruckman’s direction at seeking out the best possible coverage for me with the lowest premiums.”

To learn more, call Julie Shumer at 516.240.8872 or email If you’d like a quote, please complete this quick form.

by Ronald Brunell

Ron Brunell, managing principal at Signature B&B Companies talks about their approach to client management and how it’s been strengthened through the affiliation with Acrisure.

To learn more about The Signature B&B Companies and their complete approach to risk management, call 516.764.1100 or visit

by Adam Abresch

Cybersecurity Incidents are seemingly limitless in their variety, so it is impractical and infeasible to develop instructions for handling each type of attack. In general, however, there are three main threat vectors that organizations can prepare for in order to develop different response strategies.

Outside Attacks

  • Hackers
  • Malware
  • Ransomware
  • DDOS Attacks
  • Web-based Applications
  • Social Engineering

Insider Threats

  • Malicious Employees
  • Improper Software Installation
  • Lost Laptop
  • Stolen Mobile Device
  • Corrupted file in an email

3rd Party Incidents

  • Unauthorized Access to Information Systems by a Trusted Vendor
  • Unauthorized Access to Nonpublic Information by a 3rd Party Service Provider (3PSP)

How does your organization know there has been a Cybersecurity Event?

One of the most challenging components of the incident response process is accurately detecting and assessing and analyzing potential incidents. Establishing whether an event has occurred, and if it has, the scope, depth and type of the problem.

Signs of an incident fall into one of two categories: precursors and indicators. A precursor is a sign that an incident may occur in the future while an indicator is a sign that an event may have occurred or may be occurring now.

Detecting precursors may give an organization the heads up it needs to adjustment its Cybersecurity stance, providing an opportunity to prevent an incident altogether. Unfortunately, most attacks do not have precursors from the targeted organization’s perspective.

Examples of precursors are:

  • Web server log entries that indicate the usage of a vulnerability scanner
  • A threatening statement from a group declaring that it will attack an organization
  • Announcement of a new exploit that targeting a specific vulnerability of the organization’s mail server

While organizations rarely receive precursors in time to correct their Cybersecurity postures, indicators are much more common.

Examples of indicators:

  • Antivirus software displays an alert after detecting a host infected with malware
  • System administrator notices a filename with strange characters
  • A network intrusion sensor displays alerts when a brute force or DDOS attempting to overflow systems occurs against a server
  • Application logs multiple and repeated failed attempts to access from an unfamiliar remote system
  • Network Administrator notices a strange network traffic flows that deviate from the norm.

Precursors and indicators come from many different sources. Computer security software alerts, logs, the news, and people can all be useful in detecting indicators and precursors.

It is crucial to have a robust Cybersecurity Program in place to capture the signs of an attack and a Cybersecurity Policy in place to facilitate communication between multiple parties.

If you received a precursor or indicator this exact moment, who would be the first person you would call?

by Adam Abresch

People always want to pick my brain about cyber attacks. It’s kind of like being the IT guy in the family, “Can you look at my laptop? It runs slow.”

Imagine that guy’s Thanksgiving. Cringe.

But that’s the world we live now. Every day, sadly, there’s another headline in the news with a big name next to it.

Target data breach.

Home Depot data breach.

Verizon data breach.

In fact, due to the notoriety of the victims, some business owners now think, “No one will hack me. I’m not big enough.”


Big names sell newspapers and get clicks, shares, Likes, and comments. Little names don’t have a Cyber Protection Plan in place and possess the same data like employee information, customer information, and financial records.

Another misconception is that business owners can afford or manage a data breach. This is not a misconception like the NY Jets are in the NFC. It’s whether or not you will be able to stay in business.

60% of all SMB that experience a data breach close their doors for good within 6 months.

How could a business owner discount or miscalculate this damage? It’s actually pretty easy. Because, like an iceberg, the biggest part lies below the surface.

These are the 6 indirect costs of a data breach:

1) Increased Cost to Raise Debt

2) Impact of Operational Disruption or Destruction

3) Lost Value of Customer Relationships

4) Value of Lost Contract Revenue

5) Devaluation of Trade Name

6) Loss of Intellectual Property

A data beach can’t be prevented. It can only be mitigated.

If you’re the captain of your ship it’s you’re job to steer clear of the ice bergs in the sea. Or recruit someone to help you.

You need to recognize what is at risk. Then you need to learn how breaches occur.

This information will educate you enough to get enough Cyber liability insurance for your business and allow you to build the best pre and post breach response strategy.

Otherwise you could have a Titanic problem.