Chubb Corporation will offer Britons insurance to cover themselves from the cost of internet bullying. The so-called "troll insurance", which is being introduced in the UK for the first time, will cover the cost of professional counselling, time off work for a week or more and even relocation for all those who suffer online harassment.

The American insurance company will also provide:

  • PR consultants to counter online slander;
  • cybersecurity professionals to track those who are anonymously abusing you;
  • help with the prosecution process if any crime has been committed; and
  • provide cover for up to £50,000 (€68,971, $75,895) to policy-holders

While the policy is primarily aimed at parents who are concerned about the online activity of their children, it will also cover adults who suffer online harassment. Tara Parchment, private clients manager for UK and Ireland at Chubb, said, "We wanted our policies to reflect the changing nature of the risks that policyholders may face, often against themselves rather than their possessions."

Scale of cyberbullying

Chubb defines cyberbullying as three or more acts by the same person or group with an intention to threaten, harass or intimidate a customer. Recently a study by Vodafone/YouGov indicated that one in five teenagers had been a victim of cyberbullying. While one fifth of those affected missed school, an equal number experienced suicidal thoughts.

The United Nations recently asked governments to censor the internet, only permitting providers who "supervise content and its dissemination" as one of its studies on online abuse aimed at women highlighted the scale of the problem.

Chubb is in the middle of the biggest takeover in this sector. In July the biggest American property and casualty insurer agreed to be acquired by Zurich-based peer ACE for $28.3bn (£18.6bn; ‎€25.7bn).