Congratulations to our President on his ARM Certification!

Congratulations to our President on his ARM Certification!

Our President, Matt Davis, just obtained his Associate in Risk Management (“ARM”) designation. Looks like he now thinks he’s some kind of a “big deal”. 😄

Congrats to Matt on the accomplishment, and we look forward to being able to provide even better guidance and service to our clients.

Matt posing with his official new certificate.

About the ARM Designation

Associate in Risk Management – ARM – is the is the industry leading designation for Risk Management operations and design, and is held by Professional Risk Managers throughout Insurance, and nearly ALL other industries.  Being that Insurance is just one component of a robust Risk Management Program, we are proud that Matt obtained this designation.


To learn more about what GDI can do for your business through insurance and risk management, click the link below.

It’s Time for a Workers’ Compensation Program Upgrade

It’s Time for a Workers’ Compensation Program Upgrade

Successful companies aren’t just companies that make a lot of money.

Successful companies are those with a glowing outside and a healthy inside.

They are businesses that take care of their employees just as much as their customers.

Recently, there’s been a big push for cheap or cut-rate workers’ compensation insurance. And, when considered as part of your safety program, workers’ comp is an investment in your business’ most important asset – your employees.

Here are three reasons why a good workers’ comp policy is everything:

✔️It’s required in most states

✔️It helps injured workers get what they need

✔️And, it protects your business

But what matters most is choosing an insurance broker that helps you through the policy selection process and helps you choose a policy for your business that is the best it can be.

At GDI, we know how hard it can be sometimes when choosing. Workers’ comp requirements change by state, and policies vary by company. 

So, we let you lead us. We’ll help you compare policies, prices, and allow you to choose the right one for you. And we help you save money too.

Our programs allow you to insure your own employees and give them the peace of mind that you have prepared for anything. 

It shows not that you’re thinking about yourself, but that you care about them. You see them as the lifeblood of your business, because they are. 

Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks

Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks

Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks

In recent years, ransomware attacks have steadily been on the rise. These incidents—which entail cybercriminals compromising a device or server and demanding a large payment be made before restoring the technology (as well as any data stored on it) for the victim—double extortion ransomware attacks are one of the most damaging cyberattack methods, incurring an average of $1 million in total losses per incident.

As these attacks become increasingly common, numerous ransomware techniques have also emerged. Specifically, double extortion ransomware attacks are now a potential cybersecurity concern for organizations across industry lines. This technique follows a similar protocol to that of a typical ransomware attack, but comes with an extra threat—the victim must pay a ransom not only to regain access to their technology and data, but also to keep that data from being uploaded publicly online.    

Double extortion ransomware attacks are particularly concerning, seeing as these incidents can further pressure organizations to comply with ransom demands in order to keep their data private. Review the following guidance to learn more about how double extortion ransomware attacks work and what your organization can do to prevent such an attack.

Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks

How Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks Work

To outline the general framework of a double extortion ransomware attack, this technique starts out like most other ransomware incidents, in which a cybercriminal first gains access to their target’s device or server—often via phishing scams, nonsecure websites or malicious attachments. From there, the cybercriminal is able to compromise the victim’s technology and encrypt data stored on it. Then, the cybercriminal delivers their ransom demand and accompanying consequences for noncompliance.

Contrary to a typical ransomware incident, however, these consequences are twofold. That is, failing to pay the ransom could result in the cybercriminal both permanently restricting the victim’s access to their technology and sensitive data, as well as sharing this data publicly on the internet. Although double extortion ransomware attacks can occur at any organization, these incidents are most common within establishments that store a considerable amount of sensitive data. This includes health care facilities, financial institutions, government organizations and large retail businesses.

Double extortion ransomware attacks can be significantly more damaging for affected organizations than typical ransomware incidents. This is because even if organizations have protocols in place (e.g., storing data in multiple secure locations) that allow them to recover their compromised information without paying a ransom, they may still be pressured to do so in order to keep their data from going public. After all, a data breach can lead to further ramifications—including reputational damages, regulatory fines and class action lawsuits.

What’s more, cybercriminals who conduct double extortion ransomware attacks are known to demand higher ransom payments, sell or trade stolen data to other attackers for future extortion attempts and still move forward with sharing data publicly even after the ransom is paid (whether on purpose or by accident)—making these attacks all the more damaging.

Preventing Double Extortion Ransomware Attacks

When it comes to combatting double extortion ransomware attacks, it’s important to prioritize standard ransomware prevention measures. This includes conducting routine employee training on how to detect potential ransomware risks (e.g., suspicious emails or attachments), implementing policies that prohibit browsing nonsecure websites on organizational servers or devices, and installing adequate security features on all workplace technology (e.g., a virtual private network, antivirus programs, data encryption software, email spam filters, an internet firewall and a patch management system).

In addition to these key prevention measures, the best course of action for reducing double extortion ransomware attack risks is to establish an effective cyber incident response plan for your organization. This plan should explicitly address double extortion ransomware attack scenarios and outline steps that employees should take to limit the damages during such an event.

Lastly, it’s vital to secure appropriate insurance coverage for ultimate peace of mind in the event of a ransomware attack. A dedicated cyber insurance policy can offer much-needed support and resources when an attack occurs, minimizing the potential damages and financial impact on your organization.

For additional risk management guidance and insurance solutions, contact us today.

California’s Leader in Insurance and Risk Management

As one of the fastest-growing agencies in California, GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. is able to provide its clients with the latest and greatest of what the insurance industry has to offer and much, much more. The GDI team has developed an “insurance cost reduction” quoting plan, that provides you with the best coverage at the best rate!

We are headquartered in Turlock, CA, with locations across the heart of California’s Central Valley, Northern California and beyond to provide a local feel to the solutions and services we provide our clients. We pride ourselves on exceeding our client’s expectations in every interaction to make sure that our client’s know how much we value and appreciate their business.

Contact us today 1-209-634-2929 for your comprehensive cyber liability insurance quote!

Direct and Indirect Workers’ Compensation Costs Explained

Direct and Indirect Workers’ Compensation Costs Explained

Direct and Indirect Workers’ Compensation Costs Explained

Workers’ compensation claims have a variety of different costs associated with them. Some of these costs are expected costs, while others are unexpected. Direct and indirect workers’ compensation costs explained, here’s the difference between these terms:

  • Expected costs are those that are covered by workers’ compensation insurance. Such expenses are commonly referred to as direct costs.
  • Unexpected costs are those that workers’ compensation insurance does not cover. These expenses are commonly referred to as indirect costs.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), both direct and indirect costs can have a substantial impact on employers and their bottom lines. As such, it’s important for employers to understand the difference between direct and indirect costs, how to reduce these costs and why it’s important to do so.

 Direct and Indirect Workers' Compensation Costs

Direct vs. Indirect Costs

Direct and indirect costs are determined by which expenses workers’ compensation insurance will or will not cover. To reiterate, direct costs are those that are covered by such insurance, which can include:

  • Employee wage benefits—These benefits include temporary total, temporary partial, permanent partial and permanent total disability. Employers have to pay these benefits when an employee is unable to work or return to work in full capacity.
  • Medical payments—These payments refer to any medical costs needed to treat an employee’s injury.
  • Vocational rehabilitation costs—These expenses are any costs associated with an employee’s rehabilitation (e.g., training and career counseling).
  • Death/dependency benefits—These benefits are for the spouse or dependents of an employee who was killed by a work-related injury. Such benefits vary by state.
  • Legal fees—These fees include those associated with a workers’ compensation claim, any civil liability expenses and settlement costs.

Indirect costs for a workers’ compensation claim are those not covered by such insurance. These costs can vary depending on the extent of an employee’s injury. Some indirect costs include:Wage and hour costs—These additional costs are incurred by employees who must work extra hours to compensate for another employee’s time away from work. This includes hiring temporary workers or having employees work overtime to fill in for the missing worker.

  • HR support expenses—This includes the increased work and time incurred by individuals who handle workers’ compensation claims and related paperwork.
  • Claim investigation costs—This includes costs associated with the investigation of a workers’ compensation claim if there is a concern of fraud.
  • Hazard mitigation costs—This includes costs associated with mitigating the hazard(s) that caused an employee’s injury.
  • Production deadline extensions—An injured employee’s absence can cause delays in production, thus increasing production costs and negatively affecting business contracts.
  • Training expenses—This refers to the costs of training other employees to fill in for an injured employee if they are unable to return to work in their original capacity. This can be a temporary or permanent arrangement. If it’s permanent, the company may have to cover the costs of hiring a new employee.
  • OSHA fines—If an employee is injured or killed at work, an inspection will be triggered and the employer may be subject to OSHA citations for any safety issues found during the inspection. Also, the more employee injuries and fatalities an employer experiences, the higher their business’s incident rate will be—thus triggering more OSHA inspections.
  • Insurance premium expenses—The more injury-related costs an employer experiences, the higher their experience modification factor will be. As a result, their business may be considered high risk and could receive increased premium rates.
  • Repair costs—Repair expenses associated with property or equipment can also be considered indirect costs, depending on whether or not the property or equipment was involved in an injury-causing incident.
  • Workplace culture concerns—A company with a high rate of injury may encounter poor employee morale, particularly because employees may begin to think that their employer does not care about their well-being. Typically, the lower morale is within a company, the higher incident rates will be.
  • Reputational struggles—A company with a high rate of workers’ compensation claims can garner a bad reputation. With a poor reputation, business contracts and qualified workers may be difficult to secure. A bad reputation can negatively impact an employer’s bottom line and even lead to their business closing down altogether.

Controlling these direct and indirect costs can be beneficial for employers. That’s why it’s crucial to be proactive.

 Direct and Indirect Workers' Compensation Costs

Reducing Direct and Indirect Costs

It’s important for employers to understand that investing in their safety programs can positively affect the outcome of direct and indirect costs. For instance, managing safety programs at a business and having employees actively engage in hazard identification can reduce the likelihood of injuries. By reducing injuries, direct costs related to expenses such as wage benefits and medical payments will also decrease. This will, in turn, lower indirect costs as well. Having a successful safety program is the foundation of reducing workers’ compensation claims. If an employer cannot eliminate workers’ compensation claims, another way to reduce direct and indirect claims is to proactively manage claims. This can involve working with employees to get them back to work quicker after an injury and following up with claims handlers. Furthermore, participating in the claims process can improve communication between an employer and their employees, as well as the employer and their insurance company.

Having an effective return-to-work program can also help with reducing direct and indirect costs. Having other work options for employees that fit within their medical restrictions encourages employees to return to work quicker, thereby reducing a significant amount of direct and indirect costs.

The Importance of Reducing Direct and Indirect Workers’ Compensation Costs

Minimizing direct and indirect workers’ compensation costs is critical. By reducing injuries, a company can continue to function normally, avoid interruptions and prevent issues with production or business contracts.

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), work-related injury costs for employers in 2019 totaled $171 billion. This total can be broken down as follows:

  • $52.9 billion in wage and productivity losses
  • $35.5 billion in medical expenses
  • $59.7 billion in administrative expenses

Employers’ uninsured costs ($13.9 billion), property or equipment damage ($5 billion) and fire-related losses ($3.7 billion) also contributed to this total.

In breaking these costs down, the NSC found that such expenses came out to $1,100 per employee. Further, the average cost per fatality was $1.2 million, while the average cost of an injured employee’s medical treatment was $42,000.

Overall, by reducing employee injuries, employers can help create a positive work culture and lower workers’ compensation expenses— thus minimizing both direct and indirect costs.

Contact GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. to discuss your workers’ compensation needs.

California’s Leader in Insurance and Risk Management

As one of the fastest-growing agencies in California, GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. is able to provide its clients with the latest and greatest of what the insurance industry has to offer and much, much more. The GDI team has developed an “insurance cost reduction” quoting plan, that provides you with the best coverage at the best rate!

We are headquartered in Turlock, CA, with locations across the heart of California’s Central Valley, Northern California and beyond to provide a local feel to the solutions and services we provide our clients. We pride ourselves on exceeding our client’s expectations in every interaction to make sure that our client’s know how much we value and appreciate their business.

Contact us today 1-209-634-2929 for your comprehensive workers’ compensation insurance quote!

The Ins and Outs of Convenience Store Insurance

The Ins and Outs of Convenience Store Insurance

The Ins and Outs of Convenience Store Insurance

A steady flow of customers is great for business, but it also increases your risk of an accident. Convenience stores – and those with attached gas stations – have a particular list of risks that set you apart from regular retailers. A suite of convenience store insurance products specially tailored for your needs not only will provide broad protection but also will keep you in business even if you experience a big loss.

Today’s convenience stores sell a panoply of items – everything from packaged goods to alcohol to food prepared on the premises. Your shop may be attached to a gas station with or without a car wash, or you may exchange propane tanks, sell lottery tickets or provide an ATM. Each of these adds to your risk profile.

Let’s Look at Convenience Store Insurance Coverage.

Property damage (including store exterior and interior, plate glass, cooking/cooling appliances, gas pumps, canopies, car wash equipment and signs) Business property of others (including ATMs, DVD rentals or other partner products)

  • Harm to others (including damage to their cars or injury to their person)
  • Pollution liability (for those with fuel services)Fuel tank contamination
  • Foodborne illness (to cover food you prepare, heat or refrigerate)
  • Food spoilage (in case there is a power outage or refrigeration failure)
  • Loss of business income (often called business interruption insurance)
  • Theft of money and securities (this has only minimal coverage under most business owners policies
  • and commercial property coverage)
  • Sewage and drain backup

These hazards are in addition to your workers’ compensation insurance needs. You may also want to look at employment practices liability insurance and active shooter insurance. Although you try to maintain a safe workplace for your employees, bad actors can create serious threats at your worksite. Injuries incurred from mistreatment or violence might not be covered under workers’ compensation, so it’s important to talk to your insurance professional about these situations.

If you are one of those business owners who improve your community not only through great service but also with curbside appeal, you may have need of outdoor property coverage that goes beyond canopies and signs. That could include statues, seasonal displays, and even vintage vehicles. While these might not be covered by standard property and liability policies, they usually can be added by “endorsement,” an addendum to your insurance contract.

Convenience Store Insurance

Benefits of BOP and Program Insurance

A business owners policy (BOP) is a tidy way to bundle important insurance coverages like general liability, commercial property, equipment breakdown, and business income protection. You may also find an insurance program specifically designed for convenience stores is a good way to go. Such programs are built encompass most of the risks your operation will encounter.

They may be more affordable and expedient than getting a different stand-alone policy for each area of risk you face. Insurers or agencies that provide convenience store insurance programs usually also help with risk management in some way. Even the application for specialized coverage can raise your awareness of actions that will reduce your risk of losses.

For example, you will be required to provide an accounting of your safety protocols at your pumps, your car wash, your entrance/exit, your cash registers, your safe, and your parking lot. You will be asked about crime prevention measures, such as panic buttons at the cash register, ways you secure the building, how often you make bank deposits, what kind of security cameras you have, and how you guard ATMs and safes.

Your insurer will want to know about the background of your owners, management and employees to make sure there are no indications of criminal history. And if you are preparing food, you will need to report your fire-suppression protocols, your shut-off capabilities for cooking equipment, and your anti-burn protections for staff and customers.

Your cybersecurity will also be assessed since you will be transmitting financial data online and, in the case of rewards members, you will store or process personal identifiable information.

If you own more than one store, it is possible to secure coverage for multiple properties at once, and some policies are written to allow easy expansion of coverage to include newly acquired shops or additions to your current operations – for example, adding a car wash.

A Word About Liquor

A commercial general liability insurance policy typically excludes coverage for alcohol if the business generates a profit from its sale. That leaves an important gap in your coverage – and one that could be devastating for your business if someone were to suffer serious injury or death related to consumption of alcohol you sold.

Liquor liability insurance may be required in your state, but even if it isn’t, its protection is worth the cost. Defense attorney fees alone can run upwards of $100,000 in serious cases. The coverage can be added as an endorsement to your general liability insurance or purchased as a stand-alone product. Shops that have trained their staff on alcohol sales and enforce strict policies on ID checks are considered better risks, so make sure you have tight protocols in place and can document them.

California’s Leader in Insurance and Risk Management

As one of the fastest-growing agencies in California, GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. is able to provide its clients with the latest and greatest of what the insurance industry has to offer and much, much more. The GDI team has developed an “insurance cost reduction” quoting plan, that provides you with the best coverage at the best rate!

We are headquartered in Turlock, CA, with locations across the heart of California’s Central Valley, Northern California and beyond to provide a local feel to the solutions and services we provide our clients. We pride ourselves on exceeding our client’s expectations in every interaction to make sure that our client’s know how much we value and appreciate their business.

Contact us today 1-209-634-2929 for your comprehensive convenience store insurance quote!