Category Legal Affairs

New emerging risk insights

22 June 2023 Patrick Bracher, Norton Rose Fulbright
Patrick Bracher, Norton Rose Fulbright

Patrick Bracher, Norton Rose Fulbright

Swiss Re has published their latest SONAR (Systematic Observation of Notions Associated with Risk). Many of the risks mentioned are specific to the northern hemisphere but some of them will be of interest locally in South Africa.

  • Medical advances lead to longer life expectancy creating new insurance opportunities; but they create more difficulty in predicting mortality and morbidity rates, and possibly more medical malpractice and product liability claims arising from new therapies and treatments.
  • A recent outbreak of Avian influenza that has killed millions of birds globally is a reminder of the possibility of an epidemic or pandemic, which needs to be underwritten against.
  • Anxiety and distraction from social media bingeing is being linked to poor mental health outcomes as well as more sedentary lifestyles with co-morbidity such as obesity and cardiovascular disease. Claims against companies profiting by encouraging overuse are possible.
  • The growing use and capabilities of machine learning systems can lead to new liabilities and the risk of fraudsters targeting insurers’ own systems.
  • Targeted data poisoning could lead to high failure rates for instance with automatic cars, medical diagnosis software, and other internet-of-things disruption.
  • The increased use of digital payments including online shopping will see a shift from theft and burglary claims to money-transfer crimes and cyber insurance losses. Complaints regarding e-shopping are already flooding consumer ombuds

First published by: Financial Institutions Legal Snapshot

Quick Polls


What is your one-liner for the 2024 National Budget speech?


Creepy failure to adjust income tax, medical tax credits
Overall happy, it should support economic growth
Overall unhappy, soaring public sector wages and broken SOEs suck..
There are too few taxpayers, too many grant recipients.
fanews magazine
FAnews February 2024 Get the latest issue of FAnews

This month's headlines

On the insurance industry’s radar in 2024
Insurers, risk managers unsure of AI’s judgement credentials
Is offshore the place to be in 2024?
Gap claims: erosion of medical benefits, soaring specialist fees
Investments and retirement… is conventional wisdom under threat?
Subscribe now