TAKEN – What you need to know about Kidnap and Ransom Insurance

By: Denise Koslowsky

Hands of a missing kidnapped

Travel is all about exploration and adventure!  Even if you are traveling for business, getting on a plane and heading abroad is exciting.  Unfortunately the world we live in is not always safe and there are certain regions of the world where being kidnapped and held for ransom are a reality, not merely the plot of a movie. If your family has accumulated a large amount of wealth and has a high profile, then it is something you may need to consider.  If you are a business owner and do business internationally, then you too may need to have a conversation about Kidnap and Ransom insurance.


Could you become a target?
Studies have shown that terrorists utilize the internet to help them pick their targets. 

While you are planning your adventure, taking safety precautions is important.  If you are a high net worth individual and have a high public profile, then it may be worth considering some extra protection.  Below is a list of some of the top areas of the world that have a higher risk associated with Kidnap and Ransom:

  • Mexico
  • Venezuela
  • Columbia
  • Nigeria
  • Haiti
  • Syria
  • Libya


If your business sends employees abroad for business whether for a quick trip or a long term assignment, you need to be prepared.  If you do business in one of the high risk areas listed above, protect your business with Kidnap and Ransom Insurance.

 If your business has a Kidnap and Ransom policy in place, think twice about publicizing it….that is a bit like holding up a sign that says “kidnap me” and posting it on social media.

 What’s Covered?
As with any insurance policy, there are different coverages associated with a Kidnap and Ransom policy.  Who the policy covers (officers, directors, employees, their guests), if the coverage is for around the clock or only during business hours and business related activities and if the policy makes provisions for instances such as extortion and hijacking are all variables.  However there are a few generalities that are usually included:

Protection for your business often includes coverage for:

  • Crisis management team
  • Public relations assistance
  • Property damage
  • Reward payments
  • Liability

 Protection for your kidnapped employee often includes coverage for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Accidental death or dismemberment
  • Repatriation
  • Loss of income

 Protecting your Interests:

 Did you know that globally there are between 5000 – 10,000 estimated kidnappings per year?  It’s true, and an estimated 42% of those taken are under the age of 16. 


What if it happens to you
What if you find yourself in this impossible situation and your spouse or child is kidnapped?  First, go against your instinct and Don’t Panic.  It is important to know that most of the time; the person who has been kidnapped gets released.

If you are planning a trip or you own a business that sends their employees to one of the high risk areas we have mentioned above, we encourage you to let us know. We are here to protect not only our personal insurance clients but our business insurance clients as well, no matter where they may roam. At Advocate Brokerage, We’re With You Everywhere.  If you want to find out more about our Kidnap and Ransom insurance, give us a call at 914-723-7100.


Kidnapping by the Numbers
Number of abductions annually

Columbia                                             3000
Venezuela                                              416
Mexico                                                  120
Nigeria                                                     51
Haiti                                                        40
Syria/Libya                                               6

Average time held captive
Mexico                                                30 days
Syria/Libya                                         90 days

Average Settlements
Columbia                                             $250 million paid annually
Mexico                                                $200K per kidnapping
Syria/Libya                                         $900K per kidnapping

According to Insurance Information Institute

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