Category: Member Benefits

How to prevent ransomware attacks on your farm

How to prevent ransomware attacks on your farm

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

Farms are growing in size and sophistication. At the same time, ag markets and supply chains are relying more and more on digital systems that can be vulnerable to cyberattacks. Ransomware is one type of attack that can prove particularly costly but there are ways you can help prevent ransomware attacks.

“Any industry that relies on a complicated supply chain or timefocused requirements to get products to consumers are going to be in the crosshairs for these criminal groups,” says Nationwide Senior Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer, Todd Lukens. “When a farm or company is growing fast, computer security programs can’t keep up. In many ways, ag businesses are perfect targets.”

Ransomware is a type of cyberattack when someone illegally gains access to your computer systems or files, then locks them down until you pay a ransom to restore access. Recovery can take a lot of time and money. Business interruption, recovery, restoring systems and paying the ransom itself are all potential ransomware costs to a farm or agribusiness.

“These attacks have ramifications that last from days to weeks to months. Ransomware gives criminals the potential to make millions in a short amount of time,” adds Lukens. “Farms and agribusinesses are growing targets for these criminals.”

Ways to prevent ransomware attacks on your farm or ag business
The best way to avoid an attack and its financial hit is to practice what Lukens calls “good cyber hygiene.” Keeping computer software uptodate and ensuring you have security protocols in place on every device can help. Lukens also recommends:

  • Educating your team on all types of cyberattacks
  • Making sure no one can access computer systems or files on the internet
  • Utilizing a virtual private network (VPN) or secure connection for any internetconnected computer or server
  • Requiring multifactor authentication for all employees
  • Creating a backup plan so files and other data are available if you are hit by ransomware or another type of cyberattack

     

Insurance coverage and protection
There are cyber liability coverages and services to help protect you and your farm or agribusiness from loss from a ransomware or other cyberattack. That protection extends well beyond the attack itself.

“Cyberattack policies and endorsements may include coverage for liabilities associated with a data breach like ransom negotiation and payment,” said Lukens. “Policies can include business interruption loss while systems are down during an attack.”

Lukens recommends educating your farm or agribusiness workforce about cyberattacks like ransomware and how to best protect yourself. This can also help you identify the right coverage options.

“If you live in an area prone to severe storms, would you go without property insurance?” Lukens said. “The more we rely on computer systems to conduct our business, the more impactful they are when they go down. So, we have to protect them.”

Visit AgInsightCenter.com for resources and expert tips on trending topics to help you run a successful
business and maintain the safety of your operation.

[1] *A.M. Best Market Share Report 2022.

Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.
© 2023 Nationwide

 

pires well after
baling. That continued respiration in the presence of oxygen after it’s baled creates conditions that can
cause bales to spontaneously combust. Wet hay that continues to respire can generate heat and
eventually spontaneously combust.

After hay is baled and stored at higher moisture levels, the fire risk from spontaneous combustion is
greatest in the first two to six weeks. And that risk continues if hay bales are stored where moisture can
linger, like a barn with a leaky roof or highhumidity area.

Hay placed in storage should have a moisture content under 25%, according to a report from the
Pennsylvania State University Agriculture and Biological Engineering Department. Higher levels of
moisture require an oxygen limiting storage system. The heat generated by the crop plus the presence
of oxygen increases the risk of a fi

Summer farm safety tips for kids and teens

Summer farm safety tips for kids and teens

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

The end of the school year and beginning of summer break is an exciting time for farm kids. It’s also the start of what should be a time of heightened safety awareness among parents and other adults on the farm as young people help out around the farm.

That’s especially important today — as a challenging farm labor situation may have many farmers enlisting teenagers and even younger family members to work on the farm. Given the increased likelihood of injury or fatality from common farm work among young people, safety should be the top priority whenever youth put on their work gloves.

Farm safety starts with a simple conversation
Preventing conditions that favor injury or worse when youth are working on the farm starts with a simple conversation. When it becomes a regular topic of conversation, safety becomes part of the culture of your farm.

“My son is right there with his dad every step of the way when it comes to taking care of the pigs,” said farmer and Nationwide Risk Management Manager Emily Atwood. “When he sees his dad do something, he thinks that’s something he can do too – but that’s not always the case.”

Atwood knows there are countless farm hazards and considers frequent safety conversations the foundation of smart, attentive behavior in her son, especially when she’s unable to directly supervise him.

“We talk to him regularly about being safe and making good decisions and making sure either mom and dad knows where he’s at and what he’s doing at all times,” Atwood said. “We just want to build that awareness in him, so he thinks twice before he makes a dangerous decision, especially when we’re not there with him.”

Steps to promote a safe working environment
There are steps Atwood and other farmers can take to promote a safe working environment, both before and while youth are helping out on the farm.

•Designate areas where they can and can’t go. Safe areas should be separated from potential hazards like machinery and confined spaces like manure pits. Consider fencing off or locking particularly hazardous areas, like chemical or fuel storage.
•Inspect your farm regularly. Things change on a daily basis on the farm, especially during the busy summer months. Take time to check for any changes in potential hazards as frequently as possible.
•Assign young workers appropriate jobs. Make sure young workers can do their work safely. Train them on any work they’re doing, reminding them often of the necessary safety precautions.
•Store equipment and machinery safely. Remove keys from machinery like tractors, and make sure all hydraulic components are lowered.
•Demonstrate safe habits. Don’t introduce youth to potential hazards like riding along unsecured in machinery, using farm shop tools alone and entering confined spaces.

Visit AgInsightCenter.com for resources and expert tips on trending topics to help you run a successful business and maintain the safety of your operation.

[1] *A.M. Best Market Share Report 2022.

Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual
Insurance Company. © 2023 Nationwide

pires well after
baling. That continued respiration in the presence of oxygen after it’s baled creates conditions that can
cause bales to spontaneously combust. Wet hay that continues to respire can generate heat and
eventually spontaneously combust.

After hay is baled and stored at higher moisture levels, the fire risk from spontaneous combustion is
greatest in the first two to six weeks. And that risk continues if hay bales are stored where moisture can
linger, like a barn with a leaky roof or highhumidity area.

Hay placed in storage should have a moisture content under 25%, according to a report from the
Pennsylvania State University Agriculture and Biological Engineering Department. Higher levels of
moisture require an oxygen limiting storage system. The heat generated by the crop plus the presence
of oxygen increases the risk of a fi

Get the most out of raising backyard chickens with these tips


Get the most out of raising backyard chickens with these tips

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

Move over cats and dogs; small chicken flocks are rapidly taking over urban, suburban and rural backyards around the country. Raising backyard chickens is becoming more popular for multiple reasons, including as a way to save a few dollars on your family’s grocery bill and provide fun family learning opportunities.

But raising backyard chickens for egg or meat production is more than just a hobby. Every breed has its strengths and weaknesses. Housing, sanitation and protection from predators are all important to consider in how you build your flock. And make sure you’re managing the risks and liabilities raising chickens can create especially if you’re selling to neighbors.

“Spend time educating yourself about all facets of the species,” according to Nationwide Agribusiness Sales Development Specialist Mekenze Cortum. “Don’t forget to consider safety as well as the educational opportunities for kids and teens in learning to care for the animals.”

What to think about when adding a backyard chicken flock If you’re considering raising chickens in a small flock as a hobby or way to diversify existing smallscale ag production, here are the things you should think about.

  1. Check local ordinances/regulations. Many cities and towns regulate backyard flocks. Check with local officials to see if there are any limitations. For example, some cities may limit the total number allowed, or allow unlimited laying hens but not permit roosters.
  2. Find the right breeds. There’s a variety of chicken breeds with a range of traits. Rhode Island red and Ameraucana chickens, for example, are hardy, do well in small flocks and have easy dispositions. Orpington birds are better suited to cool or cold climates.
  3. Keep your birds housed. Native predators and severe weather can endanger a backyard chicken flock. Provide the right housing to minimize these risks. With many options, make sure the coop design you choose provides three to five square feet of space for each bird.
  4. Limit your flock’s exposure to other birds. Like other birds, chickens are susceptible to transmissible diseases like Avian Influenza and coccidiosis. The less you expose your chickens to other native birds, the lower the chances they’ll contract one of a few common diseases.
  5. Keep it clean. Good sanitation and safehandling practices are musts for any backyard flock. This minimizes the risk of disease infection as well as any foodborne illness like salmonella that can be passed to humans when consuming infected eggs or meat.
  6. Be careful with electrical and fire safety. Laying hens need regular light and consistent warmth
    to produce eggs at their full potential. That means many chicken coops include heaters and lights. Keep heat lamps free of debris and inspect them and other electrical components often to prevent fire risk.

Make sure you’re covered

Raising backyard chickens can be a rewarding experience, whether in rural, suburban or urban setting.
Make sure you’re covered so small risks don’t become big ones, whether through a homeowner’s or
farm insurance policy.
 
“It’s important for folks to consult with their insurance agent regarding potential liability concerns and coverage considerations for raising backyard chickens,” Cortum said.


Visit AgInsightCenter.com for more resources and expert tips on trending topics to help you run a successful business and maintain the safety of your operation.

*A.M. Best Market Share Report 2021.

Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. © 2022 NationwideWhen harvested at a higher moisture level, a forage crop sometimes stays damp and res

pires well after
baling. That continued respiration in the presence of oxygen after it’s baled creates conditions that can
cause bales to spontaneously combust. Wet hay that continues to respire can generate heat and
eventually spontaneously combust.

After hay is baled and stored at higher moisture levels, the fire risk from spontaneous combustion is
greatest in the first two to six weeks. And that risk continues if hay bales are stored where moisture can
linger, like a barn with a leaky roof or highhumidity area.

Hay placed in storage should have a moisture content under 25%, according to a report from the
Pennsylvania State University Agriculture and Biological Engineering Department. Higher levels of
moisture require an oxygen limiting storage system. The heat generated by the crop plus the presence
of oxygen increases the risk of a fi

Avis

PAY NOW™ AND SAVE UP TO 35% OFF AVIS RENTALS

Maryland Farm Bureau members can save up to 35 percent off Avis base rates with PAY NOW* for max savings with Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) number A298820.  In addition, enjoy additional offers** like dollars off, a complimentary upgrade, or a free weekend day. Visit avis.com/mdfb or call 1-800-331-1212 to make a reservation.

Avis Car Rental operates one of the world’s best-known car rental brands with approximately 5,450 locations in more than 165 countries.

If you have member benefit questions, please call 410-922-3426 or visit your local FB office.

*Discount rates may vary between 10 and 35 percent, depending on time of year, availability, selection of PAY NOW™,   and other factors.

**Farm Bureau discount may NOT be stacked with other AWD corporate or membership discounts.

Visit the AVIS  online reservation form. Select “use an offer code” and enter your “AWD” offer code. Then click “View Rates” and you’ll see available cars and rates for your rental days. 

Budget

PAY NOW™ AND SAVE UP TO 35% OFF BUDGET RENTALS

Maryland Farm Bureau members can save up to 35 percent off Budget base rates with PAY NOW* for max savings with Budget Customer Discount (BCD) number Y775720.  In addition, enjoy additional offers* like dollars off, a complimentary upgrade, or a free weekend day. Visit budget.com/fb or call 1-800-218-7992 to make a reservation

Budget Car Rental operates one of the world’s best-known car rental brands with approximately 5,450 locations in more than 165 countries.

If you have member benefit questions, please call 410-922-3426 or visit your local FB office.

*Discount rates may vary between 10 and 35 percent, depending on time of year, availability, selection of PAY NOW™,   and other factors.

**Farm Bureau discount may NOT be stacked with other BCD corporate or membership discounts.

Visit the Budget online reservation form. Select “use an offer code” and enter your “BCD” offer code. Then click “View Rates” and you’ll see available cars and rates for your rental days.

Save 20% off Budget Truck rentals  

Maryland Farm Bureau members can now save 20 percent off Budget Truck Rental consumer rates with Farm Bureau Account number 56000127747. Save 20 percent on Budget Truck.

Moving can be stressful but renting your moving truck doesn’t need to be. Take truck rental off your list of worries and visit BudgetTruck.com/FarmBureau or to make a reservation today!

Budget Truck Rental is one of the world’s best-known truck rental brands with over 1,000 locations in the Continental United States. With over 20,000 non-CDL medium-light duty trucks in its fleet, Budget Truck has the solution you need for any project! Budget Truck Rental, LLC. is owned by Avis Budget Group, Inc., which operates and licenses the brand throughout the world.

Secure your rental today! Simply call 1-800-566-8422 and provide the Farm Bureau Account number 56000127747 or visit BudgetTruck.com/FarmBureau and complete the online reservation form. Click “Find Your Truck” and you’ll see available vehicles and rates for your rental days.

If you have member benefit questions, please call 410-922-3426.

Terms and Conditions: The Farm Bureau discount is only on reservations and cannot be applied in person at the rental counter. Discount only applies to truck rental and mileage rates and does not apply to taxes, surcharges, fees, refueling, moving supplies or optional items. Offer is not available in AK or HI and is subject to availability at participating locations; some blackout dates may apply. Rate may vary by location and seasonality.

The Lincoln Motor Company

Farm Bureau Advantage

Farm Bureau members are eligible to receive $750 bonus cash. You must be a member for 30 consecutive days prior to purchase. 

Visit www.LincolnFarmBureauAdvantage.com or see your authorized Lincoln dealer for qualifications and complete details.

Ford


Farm Bureau members are eligible to receive $500 Exclusive Cash Reward.   You must be a member for 30 consecutive days prior to purchase. 

Visit www.FordFarmBureauAdvantage.com or see your authorized Ford dealer for qualifications and complete details. 

This member benefit requires a 6-digit membership number, please add leading zeros.

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