About 2% of crypto firms in Asia-Pacific are insurable, lower than the global average of about 10%, according to an executive of Aon PLC.
Cyberattacks and fraudulent schemes are rife in a largely unregulated market of cryptocurrency, where demand for insurance exceeds the number of policies available in the market.
"In the crypto and digital asset space, we do not have that critical mass of insurance and risk spread, and we do not have that critical mass of premium pool. So the insurer's risk selection process is heightened to the extent that nine out of 10 risks will be deemed not yet insurable," said Murray Wood, Aon's head of financial specialties in Asia, told reporters in a press conference in Hong Kong on May 8.
Wood's comment came hours after cryptocurrency exchange Binance said hackers withdrew 7,000 bitcoins in a large-scale security breach. The exchange said it has an emergency insurance fund, which would cover the incident in full.
On May 8, Aon said it has brokered a deal in which a group of unnamed international underwriters will partner with Branding China Group Ltd., a Hong Kong-based crypto trading company, to launch an insured custody service for Asian cryptocurrency investors.
Underwriters in general "are looking at the sophistication of the company, how transparent the company can be, the checks and balances and all the processes, the vendors they have in place, security protocols," Wood said.