Once you’re above the preteen years, kidnap and ransom sounds like a rather exotic peril…something that only happens to drug kingpins on shadowy, private islands. But the threat for adults is real, especially for high net worth individuals who travel internationally.
How real? Well, author Ann Auerbach spent two years chronicling kidnap and ransom cases and estimated more than 30,000 take place every year. The FBI says there are more 60,000 missing American adults whose disappearance is unexplained and for whom there’s a reasonable concern about their safety.
For United States citizens, high net worth — or just the perception of it — equals high profile and the assumption by nefarious elements of ready access to liquid capital. It’s a tempting combination for brazen criminals thinking they can score a big payoff by taking a hostage and demanding cash for his or her release.
The costs of a kidnapping incident go beyond any ransom demanded. Paying a ransom — if it’s even advisable! — is certainly not a simple task. It could require a small army of consultants and advisors such as negotiators, investigators, attorneys, public relations professionals, forensic analysts, and a security force, to name a few. Reward money and extensive medical costs not covered by traditional insurance plans add to the grim picture. No matter how successful you may be, it adds up to a potentially significant financial drain.
You may even be blackmailed for payments without even being taken hostage! In some cases, perpetrators make increasingly detailed and scary threats to the safety of you, your family, and your employees, demanding payment to make it stop.
Thankfully, there are insurance products that can help mitigate this potential financial jeopardy and provide expert support from firms who specialize in handling this type of crisis. They can help negotiate a ransom, safely make the transfer, and evacuate the kidnapped out of a foreign country. These are priceless skills that you can acquire just by carrying the right insurance.
At Sinclair Risk, we have the expertise needed to tailor a kidnap and ransom policy that makes sense for you and your business. Our clients are our partners, and we pride ourselves on getting to know all aspects of your business AND your risk management needs. Concerned about this growing threat? Talk to us today about kidnap and ransom insurance.