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  • December 10, 2019

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  • Securing Passwords: There’s More To It Than You Think

    physician trying to remember her passwordWhen it’s time to create an account on a website or change your email password, you know the usual rules: at least eight characters, a mix of upper- and lower-case, at least one number, at least one special character? Following those will result in a strong password, right?

    Wrong .Those rules actually make your password both easier for a computer to crack and harder for you to remember.

    So, what makes a good password? Wired Magazine has some hints, including:

    • Don’t let your browser save your passwords. While convenient, the strength of the underpinning security of the browser is often unclear.
    • Longer is better. A sentence that is meaningless, but memorable, might be your best bet.
    • Don’t re-use passwords. A shocking number of online accounts have been breached over the years, so the chances are good that if you’re prone to re-using passwords (even in different variations), hackers would have a major head start.

    Of course, as an ISMIE policyholder, you’re protected by top-notch cyber liability protection, included with your coverage at no additional cost – but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

    For more information on protecting your practice’s electronic systems, contact our risk management team by email or by phone at 800-782-4767 ext. 3300. For questions about your cyber liability protection, contact our underwriting division at 800-782-4767 or by email. If you utilize an insurance broker, you may also wish to contact him or her. 

  • New Mexico Non-Economic Damage Cap Hangs in the Balance

    bronze female statueAt ISMIE, we monitor and report on the status of medical liability reform laws across the United States. A recent New Mexico court action was flagged as a “troubling development.”

    The New Mexico Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in a case challenging the constitutionality of the state’s $600,000 cap on non-economic damages in medical liability cases. 

    The lawsuit accused a doctor of causing a patient’s complications and eventual permanent brain damage. After the jury awarded $2.6 million to the patient, the defendant requested that the trial judge reduce the award according to the cap. However, the trial judge ruled that the cap was unconstitutional because it deprives an individual of the right to a jury trial. 

    We now wait for word from New Mexico’s high court on whether the cap violates the right to a trial by jury as guaranteed by the state constitution.

    ISMIE News will provide updates on any developments. Stay tuned!  

  • Countdown to Maximize Your Savings With Risk Rewards!

    computer and an hourglassThe holiday rush is on, but you’ve still got time to earn Risk Rewards discounts: The deadline to finish up all your qualifying 2019 Managing Risk coursework is midnight on December 31.

    Start here, and once you determine what coursework you still need to complete, know that ISMIE’s Risk Management team is here to help answer any questions you may have.

    Other than the dates noted below, live support is available Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 4:45 p.m. All after-hours messages will receive a prompt reply the next business day.

    For more information, contact our risk management team by email or by phone at 800-782-4767 ext. 3300. 

  • Coders Clash Over Cash

    Animals in the court roomWhat do you get when two companies with market capitalizations totaling more than $1 trillion disagree on who rightly owns something? A decade of litigation costing untold millions and a date with the nation’s highest court for a mega-dollar battle. 

    The two titans in this scenario are powerhouse tech companies Oracle and Google. (You might have heard of them.) The “something” they are fighting over is code – more specifically, the code supporting Google’s Android operating system, which powers more than 2.5 billion Android devices worldwide. As you can imagine, that’s a lot of software licensing fees to collect, and Oracle wants a slice of the Pie (not to mention the Nougat, the Marshmallow, and every other sweetly-named version of the system). 

    This fight dates back to 2010, when Oracle claimed that Google’s use of Oracle-owned Java code in the Android system was a violation of Oracle's copyrights. Google maintains that its use of the Java application program interface (API) qualifies as fair use because Android itself is free.

    Who is right? We don’t know, but we do know that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to take up the case. If successful, Oracle is seeking an amount that starts with the number nine, followed by nine zeros. That’s code for a whole lot of money! 

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