With a world that’s becoming increasingly digital, it’s only natural that personal computers and tech devices are also becoming more important than ever before.
Personal computers contain not just our important files and sensitive information – sometimes, we also entrust them with our entire life’s work. It’s not uncommon to hear photographers or writers keeping their whole photo library or manuscripts on a single laptop or external hard drive, for example. For something as vital as that, it’s certainly a must to ensure that your computer insurance is good enough.
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What makes good computer insurance?
Firstly, good computer insurance covers everything that you deem necessary for all your equipment. You have to be very careful when deciding on your specific insurance policy, as not all homeowners insurance cover personal computers like laptops and peripherals.
Second, you should also consider the specific company where you’re planning to take out an insurance policy. One of the things you have to check is the percentage of claims that it approves. Surely you don’t want a company that is a pushover in terms of policy claims, but some insurance companies make it hard to claim on purpose which could mean a whole world of trouble in case you do need to use your policy. A company that excels in customer service is a company you should stay with for life. Make sure that the employees are also approachable and cool-headed especially during emergency situations.
Ensuring your insurance policy
Once you’ve finally decided on a specific company, it’s now time to sift through individual policies. It really isn’t enough to just rely on extended warranties, regardless of how helpful they are. Here are some tips to help you before, during, and after taking out a computer insurance policy.
Before you sign a specific insurance policy, first create a detailed checklist of what you want your policy to cover. As mentioned above, some policies don’t cover various things that you may need, depending on the equipment you own. For example, if you have a lot of portables, you want to make sure that your policy will cover each and every one. If you’re in an area that gets lightning storms fairly often, you may also want to check policies that cover accidental lightning strikes. You never know if and when it’s going to happen to better be prepared in case it does.
During the policy signing, don’t forget to ask your agent about all your questions regarding the policy. This is the perfect time for you to pose those questions if you want the answers to make any difference to your life, since once you sign the policy, it will be hard or, at times, costly to take it back. Don’t be shy to confirm even the things that you already think you know. You may think that your policy covers even your external hard drives, but a quick confirmation could tell you that you need to look elsewhere if you want that kind of protection.
It isn’t much you can do after signing the policy, but it’s a good habit to review your policies every now and then to make sure that it stays up-to-date with your current needs. For example, you may have taken out a policy three years ago when you only had a desktop computer and a telephone, but now you own a high-end smartphone and an ultrabook as well. You will need to add those to your insurance policy too since those are also items of high value. You may even need to take out a different policy if your current one doesn’t cover portables.
Necessary things to cover in your insurance policy
Theft / Loss
Most people don’t seem to think that their devices will get stolen, but this kind of insurance is necessary for items that are portable or easily taken. This includes items like laptops, cellphones, printers, or any other item that can be lifted off without much effort. It’s also necessary in the case a loss since insurance also covers incidents like when you leave your cellphone in a restaurant and find yourself unable to get it back afterward.
Equipment in temporary locations is susceptible to getting damaged along the way or even while it’s there, which is why it’s important to make sure that your insurance policy covers them as well. Sometimes even portable items are included in policies that cover temporary locations since they can be transferred from one place to another easily.
This insurance covers all expenses that were incurred due to the loss of damage to your devices. This kind of insurance is especially important for businesses that use computers, machines, or any kind of technological devices. If one computer has to be taken out for repair, it could affect business operations for a time and even reduce the business’s daily revenue. A good insurance policy will cover these as well and provide compensation for business owners to temporarily rent a replacement while their own unit is being repaired.
Other Risks Not Covered
There are other risks not commonly covered by insurance policies that you may want to look into before signing up for one.
- Computer viruses. Viruses are a massive headache to anyone who has ever experienced them. They can completely wipe out all your important data and, in the case of malware like ransomware, can render hardware unusable in an instant.
- Force majeure. Many computer insurance policies don’t cover natural calamities like flooding, earthquakes, and even lightning strikes. Make sure you get a specific insurance policy for these situations if you live in an area that is prone to these.
- Additional equipment. There are some policies that cover only certain devices and not peripherals or auxiliary equipment such as fax devices and telephones. If these are important to you, look for a policy that will also cover them in addition to other common equipment.