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UK provider offers 'troll insurance' to cover damages of online harassment

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A strong indication that the internet has achieved heightened levels of toxicity is whether your insurance provider now offers "troll insurance." Multinational provider Chubb Corporation is now offering UK customers up to £50,000 (around $75,000) in claim money toward physical relocation, counseling, and compensation for time off due to severe online harassment, according to The Telegraph.

Coverage extends all the way to hiring reputation management firms and digital forensic specialists to help repair one's public image and potentially track down the online offender. You can sign up for Chubb's cyberbullying insurance starting January 1st, 2016, and while the program is aimed at parents whose children may be subject to such abuse, Chubb told The Telegraph that adults will also be covered in the event of a lost job or wrongful arrest stemming from harassment. The company defines cyberbullying as three or more incidents of harassment or intimidation from a single person or group of people.

"We see insurance as helping our clients get back to how they were before ..."

The abundance and severity of online harassment is no mystery even to the most casual of web users. And addressing the issue is increasingly dragging Silicon Valley into the mix as social media platforms like Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch have become avenues for harassers to target and torment people, sometimes for months on end and with dangerous tactics like sending SWAT teams to victims' homes using false threats. Yet tracking down abusers is difficult and law enforcement remains woefully behind in handling these types of threats. Murky laws regarding prosecuting abusers across country lines also makes it easy for repeat offenders to continuously harass victims for years without being caught.

"We see insurance as helping our clients get back to how they were before the incident occurred — whether it's an incident that affects their home or as a person," said Tara Parchment, Chubb's UK and Ireland private clients manager, in an interview with The Telegraph. "So we still help to restore homes, cars, and belongings that have suffered physical harm or damage, but increasingly it's about the person and how they cope."