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Thread: Insurance for webmasters/SEM?

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    Default Insurance for webmasters/SEM?

    My question: What type and where do I find insurance for my particular business? I have been looking for a policy and have talked to several agents but have not had much luck finding a policy. A lot of people don't seem to understand exactly what I do or that I really don't have any "clients."

    My business: I develop/create websites for ONLY myself. I derive all of my income from advertising fees, I utilize Google Adsense and Amazon affiliate links mostly. I do not sell any physical products at all. Currently I have 7 sites, all about different niches. This coming year I am making some changes within my business including the formation of an LLC, hiring an accountant and hopefully finding some insurance. I will also be looking the possibility of buying existing websites from other people this coming year also.

    My fear: Someone will sue me because they followed my "How to guide on making widgets" and burned their house down. Other issues that have come to mind are plagiarism, hacking, etc.

    Any thoughts or previous experience would be helpful. Thanks!

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    What you need is a general business umbrella policy. Damage to your site due to hacking would likely be cover under vandalize, but I would verify that. As for plagiarism, it is unlikely that insurance would cover that. For the plagiarism, look at one of the copyright protection services. However, the cost tends to exceed the benefits. But that cost / benefit decision would be up to you.

    Your costs should be rather low, you are not doing anything that risky.
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    hello world Array Harold Mansfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunker View Post

    My fear: Someone will sue me because they followed my "How to guide on making widgets" and burned their house down. Other issues that have come to mind are plagiarism, hacking, etc.
    In addition to what was said above, a simple disclaimer should do the trick. As long as you aren't promising false claims, cures, or things already prohibited by the FCC there shouldn't be a problem. If you are promising people false claims and things like cures, there is no insurance that protects you from criminal behavior.

    When it comes to protecting your web and intellectual property from damage or loss, insurance is also useless. Back ups are your friend. You should have all of your files, website files, ebooks, and computers backed up at least 3 times. There are plenty of services that you can do this with and home/small office servers are relatively cheap.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold Mansfield View Post
    In addition to what was said above, a simple disclaimer should do the trick. As long as you aren't promising false claims, cures, or things already prohibited by the FCC there shouldn't be a problem. If you are promising people false claims and things like cures, there is no insurance that protects you from criminal behavior.
    I only offer quality content about real subjects so I should be good from that angle. I think that having a disclaimer separate from my terms of use may be a good idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by Harold Mansfield View Post
    When it comes to protecting your web and intellectual property from damage or loss, insurance is also useless. Back ups are your friend. You should have all of your files, website files, ebooks, and computers backed up at least 3 times. There are plenty of services that you can do this with and home/small office servers are relatively cheap.
    This is a very good point and I hate to admit that I have not been keeping up with this like I should. Do you have an opinion on BackupBuddy? Ever use it? I would like to have it automated since I have a number of sites that are updated at least weekly if not daily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nealrm View Post
    What you need is a general business umbrella policy. Damage to your site due to hacking would likely be cover under vandalize, but I would verify that. As for plagiarism, it is unlikely that insurance would cover that. For the plagiarism, look at one of the copyright protection services. However, the cost tends to exceed the benefits. But that cost / benefit decision would be up to you.

    Your costs should be rather low, you are not doing anything that risky.
    Thank you for the information! I spoke with my lawyer today and she agreed that I am about as low risk as it gets and that a general liability policy should be fine in case of a frivolous lawsuit.

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    hello world Array Harold Mansfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunker View Post
    I only offer quality content about real subjects so I should be good from that angle. I think that having a disclaimer separate from my terms of use may be a good idea.



    This is a very good point and I hate to admit that I have not been keeping up with this like I should. Do you have an opinion on BackupBuddy? Ever use it? I would like to have it automated since I have a number of sites that are updated at least weekly if not daily.

    BackupBuddy is a WordPress plug in/service. I guess it's OK for that specific purpose. However, check with your host. Every host has or at least offers backups. Depending on your account even the lowest tier of hosting has something. Whether that be once a day, once a week or once a month. Even the cheap Go Daddy plans I see have back and restore options.

    It's not very hard to back up a WordPress site. Unless you've done changes to the core, wp-admin and wp-includes are always the same. wp-content and your database is where everything is store. Probably want to get the root files ( outside of the folders) too since that's usually where things like Google verification files and favicons are.

    But as for backing up your business and computers, BackupBuddy won't help. And your website should not be the only place where your content is stored.

    I use a combination of things for back ups:
    The 1TB of storage that comes with Office 365.
    The free backup offered by Google, as well as the additional services in Google for Work ( which costs about $5 mo.)
    I have a small WD Home/Office server that I back things up to. Have a second one at another location to back that up.
    I also have a few of those pocket sized WD 1TB drives laying around with various things on them.
    And then I also use a service like Carbonite as a no hassle all purpose back up of everything.
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