Singapore Update: Companies may face higher penalties for data breaches

Earlier this month, Singapore’s Minister for Communications and Information, S Iswaran proposed revisions to the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA). Designed to enhance consumer confidence in the security of Singapore’s digital economy and help businesses protect their operations, the changes would see businesses pay higher penalties for data breaches.


What does this mean for businesses?

Currently, businesses in Singapore face a maximum fine of $1 million in the event of a data breach.  Under the proposed changes, a business would receive a fine of up to 10 percent of its annual turnover in Singapore or $1 million (whichever is higher). Iswaran has indicated that the penalty must be proportionate to the severity of the security breach and the raised cap will not take effect for at least 12 months after the Act comes into force.

If a data breach impacts 500 individuals or more, this will be classified as an incident of a significant scale. In this instance, businesses will be required to notify the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) and the affected individuals if there is a significant risk of fraud or identity theft.


What do I need to do?

These changes are still being reviewed.  However, this should not stop you from considering Cyber Insurance at this juncture.  Some of the key coverages for Cyber Insurance include Business Interruption (subject to waiting periods) and expenses necessary for incident response.  In addition, some underwriters allow for coverage of regulatory fines, as a separate buy back.  If you have a Cyber Insurance policy in place and a threat is identified, you will receive a notice from the risk management provider, outlining actions to take to reduce the likelihood of a subsequent attack.


With you all the way

Overwhelmed by all the terminology?  No problem!  Feel free to contact Honan for an individual risk assessment and advice at any time.


Melanie Chong

Client Manager – Commercial, Honan Asia


Singapore’s Legislative Changes: Implications for Insurance

Employee Benefits

Reform is underway in Singapore for Worker’s Compensation Insurance (WIC) and Life Insurance. We’ll outline what these changes are, why they matter and how they could impact your organisation.


Changes to Worker’s Compensation

Back in September 2019, the Singapore Government announced various enhancements in benefits and changes to insurance requirements, which resulted in increases in premium ratings from 1 Jan 2020. This year, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced further changes.

Under the latest changes, insurance providers must be registered and licensed to underwrite WIC. There will also be changes to the claims handling processes, along with increased responsibility and administration for insurers. These changes are likely to contribute to  increased premiums (predicted to be 10% across the board), with harsher increases being felt by clients with poor loss histories and those in more hazardous occupations. 

In response to the legislative changes and the new conditions brought about by COVID-19, Underwriters are developing new products specifically designed for people working from home, including coverage for:

  • Personal Accident
  • Domestic Perils, Total Permanent Disability or other injuries sustained in the course of working from home
  • Mental Health Support

With these changes in mind, this is an ideal time to perform a full review of your Worker’s Compensation policy, proposal forms and classification of employees. 


Changes to Critical Illness Definition

From August 26, 2020, all new group critical illness plans will adopt the updated set of definitions for the standard list of 37 critical illnesses set by the Life Insurance Association Singapore (LIA). Out of the 37 critical illnesses defined under the LIA Singapore framework, changes were made to the 14 headers and 21 definitions. These changes have impacted most of the major conditions, which account for about 90% of claims.

Standardisation of critical illness definitions was first introduced by LIA in 2003. In the previous (2014) update, some of the 37 severe stage critical illness definitions were revised; and the maximum limit of 30 medical conditions per critical illnesses plan was abolished to allow for more medical conditions to be covered.

This latest review specifically addresses ambiguities that have arisen due to medical advancements and health trends in the past five years. Reviews will be conducted every three years to ensure critical illnesses products remain relevant and that the intended scope of coverage is clear to consumers.


Why is Critical Illness Insurance Important for Employees?

A study by the World Health Organisation in 2018 showed that the 2 main causes of death – cardiovascular diseases and cancer – account for 59% of all deaths in Singapore. Of those deaths, 30% are caused by cancer and each day, 36 people in Singapore receive a positive cancer diagnosis.

An increasing number of businesses find Critical Illness insurance provides their employees relief from the financial burden that can accompany a major illness. With this coverage in place, employees receive a lump-sum pay-out upon diagnosis of a critical illness condition as such a stroke, cancer, or heart attack. This is especially important if the illness means the employee is unable to continue working. Group Critical Illness insurance covers employees who are diagnosed with any of the 37 critical illness conditions.


With you all the way

Feel free to reach out to discuss your business needs. We’re experts in Insurance, Advice and Support.


Cassaundra Tan

Client Manager – Employee Benefits


Melanie Chong

Client Manager – Commercial Asia

Honan Singapore Partners with Leading Employee Benefits Platform, Zest Technology

Employee Benefits

In Singapore, a fresh, flexible and truly user-centric employee benefits platform (EBP) has been in high demand for some time. Our 12-month international search for the right partner led us to the UK based Zest Technology (Zest). Zest offers a dynamic alternative to existing EBPs and we’re thrilled to be partnering with them.


Zest: the next generation employee benefits experience 

With a wealth of expertise in the software development space, Zest is a leading employee benefits provider, offering one of the most sophisticated, cost-effective and user-friendly platforms in the global market. Delivering exceptional flexibility and scale, the Zest solution provides support and customisability, at a previously unachievable price. The market-leading platform is now available to Honan clients and partners through the Asia Pacific region.


The Zest – Honan partnership

At Honan, we’re committed to partnering with businesses and providers whose values align closely with our own. Zest’s client-first culture and collaborative approach underpins everything it does. 

With exponential benefits in store for our clients, their people and teams across the globe, we look forward to many dynamic Zest chapters ahead. 


By partnering with Zest, we’re pleased to offer our clients a simple, user-friendly EBP.



We’re With You All The Way

For more about the Zest EBP and how it can support your business, please don’t hesitate to reach out. 


Eliza White – Managing Director, Asia

+65 9127 0211


Jessie Leow – Head of Employee Benefits – Asia

+65 9129 7919

Honan and Chubb solve those pesky third party problems


Any business is precious business, especially during these tumultuous times, and being covered for any eventuality, no matter how unlikely, is increasingly important to transport specialists.  Honan and Chubb have developed Multimodal Freight Liability Insurance with modern companies in mind; companies with many moving parts, a variety of clients and a range of staff serving customers all over the world.


One such Singapore-based company, ZALT Pte, managed by Jeffery Foo found out just how valuable a comprehensive insurance plan can be in spring of 2020. With sales and shipping tailing off, a large shipment of steel pipes to Japan was secured, offering a solid job for Mr. Foo’s team. Mr Foo’s regular and usually trustworthy lashing contractor was employed and no issues were reported. However, due to an unanticipated amount of movement during bad weather at sea, the lashing work failed, meaning damages to the container and adjacent containers too (not to mention the pipes themselves.) The extra time taken to unload and eventually remove the damaged containers was claimed by the ship owner, alongside the costs of the damage itself and a long delay in port.

Nothing had prepared Mr Foo for such a sizeable and unexpected invoice, but Honan and Chubb’s Multimodal Freight Liability Insurance is prepared for anything and everything. Costs for any negligence to a third-party, including:

  • Accidental bodily injury         
  • Consequential loss arising from accidental bodily injury or
  • Accidental property loss or damage
  • Property loss/damage

can easily be claimed back, on a sliding scale of coverage from Bronze to Platinum packages. More information on any terms and conditions that need to be covered can be found on the Honan website below. Never be caught out by the unexpected again.


Do you have problems with a third party claim? Mr Foo did. See how Multimodal Freight Liability Insurance policy with Honan and Chubb meant his problems were solved with one phone call.  Read more about transport and logistics insurance here.

My Chemical Nightmare – Avoiding delivery issues with Honan and Chubb

Ever had that sinking feeling that follows making a mistake?

Employees from Chua Shipping Pte have, but were thrown a lifeline by Honan and Chubb’s Multimodal Freight Liability. Follow the link to read more.


In a bustling, busy warehouse there is ample opportunity to make mistakes, no matter how careful staff members are. This is what happened to the team at Chua Shipping Pte just a few months ago during their busiest period of the year. The family-owned transport specialist was under contract to send a small load – two drums of  industrial chemicals – from Singapore to a manufacturer on the  Chinese Mainland.  Despite many years of experience and a close team of well­-trusted employees, a warehouse error in completing the order meant that incorrect (but very similar – looking) drums were shipped to the client.


Because of the similarity in the drums, the recipient failed to spot the mistake  immediately, and the  chemicals were put into production, causing a huge problem for the manufacturer, who received hundreds of complaints about product quality from end customers. An immediate global recall of product meant that the Chinese manufacturer had a clear and valid claim for loss of sales, recall costs and the potential loss of a hard- earned  reputation as a provider of quality goods. Blame for these losses was placed squarely at the door of Chua Shipping.


Luckily, misdelivery resulting from the error outlined above is covered under the terms and conditions of the Honan and Chubb Multimodal Freight Liability policy, something that Chua Shipping had implemented earlier in the year.


The policy offers comprehensive cover, such as:

  • errors and omissions to paperwork, even down to a simple typing or filing error;
  • third party liability such as accidental injury to persons or property in the warehouse or during the journey;
  • customs liability for fines or penalties (proven or alleged) for import/export violations;
  • any kind of packaging failure by you or your sub-contractors throughout the process.


The Multimodal Freight Liability policy from Honan and Chubb helped Chua Shipping from losing money, business relationships and a good night’s sleep. It can help protect your company too.


For more information, visit:

No crying over spilt yoghurt with Honan and Chubb

Food & Beverage

Mr Ng’s week could not get any worse. But how can his Multimodal Freight Liability Insurance policy with Honan and Chubb save him from a Global Shipping catastrophe?


When Mr Ng realised that the container full of yoghurt he had been contracted to ship from Switzerland to Singapore in the summer of 2019 had been stored incorrectly, he was sure his public liability cover was enough to ensure peace of mind, and that no expensive holes would be burnt in his pocket.


An easily-made documentation error, stating that the temperature for this dairy load should be +10 degrees Fahrenheit, instead of the correct +10 degrees Celsius meant a disaster – and a delivery of frozen yoghurt. Delicious in the right circumstances, but not what the client was expecting from this particular delivery. Mr Ng was shocked to learn that his lack of cover meant a bill of over $100,000 and a very unhappy Swiss client, who was looking to blame a sloppy workforce and find a new logistics provider.


The Multimodal Freight Liability policy from Honan and Chubb would have saved Mr Ng’s embarrassment and also protected his business relationship. Under the errors and omissions section of the policy, Mr Ng (and his employees) are covered for any kind of accidental negligence leading to problems with cargo. Even down to the simplest of typing errors.


With comprehensive cover ranging from (but not limited to):

  • third party liability such as accidental injury to persons or property;
  • customs liability, for alleged or proven import/export violations;
  • special cargo extensions for errors and omissions to paperwork such as the one highlighted above.

The Multimodal Freight Liability policy can prevent the simplest of errors and leading to a costly nightmare.


For more information, visit:

A Fine Mess – Avoiding Fines and Duties with Honan and Chubb

Sending the wrong stock can be more than just a headache, it can also mean the loss of a sizeable sum of money due to unforeseen fines or duties. To avoid liability on more than just the basics choose Multimodal Freight Liability Insurance.

A common issue for transport specialists all over the world is paying an excess of duty or an exorbitant fine due to an error or lack of care in sorting, picking or packing stock. Nothing is more frustrating to a small company watching every dollar spent than an unnecessary cost due to an avoidable issue. This was the case for Ms Hwang, manager of a Singaporean company whose most recent delivery from Singapore to Pakistan was returned to its home port after a mistake was discovered on arrival.

“We were issued with a $20,000 US dollar fine due to a mistake in our warehouse,” explains Ms Hwang. “I was assuming all had gone well with the delivery of five pallets of electronic goods, when I received a phone call telling me that the actual quantity did not match with the delivered quantity and that the goods were being returned. My heart sank. It sank even further when I realised the size of the fine that we were liable for from customs in Pakistan.”

When looking into the issue, Ms Hwa discovered that the warehouse had picked incorrect pallets, but having sent them off in good faith, was not expecting any issues, or for the local agent to receive such a sizeable fine. Fortunately, this small error would was covered by the errors and omissions section of the Multimodal Freight Liabilty Insurance offered by Honan in conjunction with Chubb and SLA.

Amongst other benefits, which are outlined clearly here, the policy covers any and all financial loss arising from a mistake or error from the aspect of a transport specialist.

Ms Hwa’s recommendation shows the benefits of working closely with Honan and Chubb to choose the right coverage. “I can honestly say, having the broader coverage of insurance meant that our business lived to see another day. We would have struggled without this level of support. And for that, I am grateful.”

For more information, visit:

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