Feeds

Insuring iTunes: are your digital downloads covered?

Not all insurance policies will protect your music

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Consumers building up extensive collections of digital music and movies should ensure their downloads are protected by their home insurance policy and will be replaced if the computers keeping them are damaged or stolen. Many insurers do not cover digital possessions, it has emerged.

The days of popping down to your local record store and browsing through the racks are fading fast. Music downloads are quickly becoming music buyers' favoured medium, with online collections increasing in size rapidly.

Many users don't back up their collections, and even if they do, disasters like a house fire are as likely to destroy spare copies as much those used every day.

So what happens when your latté gets knocked over your laptop, or your server is stolen? Like your other possessions, you would hope your insurer will cough up to cover the cost of re-downloading the songs. But while some insurers will now protect you music downloads this way, it pays to do your research because there is a real divide between insurance policies that cover downloads and those that don't.

A recent report by unofficial consumer watchdog Which? found that out of 46 insurers, fewer than half covered music and other digital downloads in their policies.

Privilege Insurance last year calculated that the average Briton would have to pay £257 to replace their music downloads. It estimated that that cost will rise £25 each year as digital music collections grow.

Almost a quarter - 24 per cent - of music downloaders have had their entire collections lost.

Register Hardware underwent the pain of several insurance companies' automated phone systems to discover that some are already willing to protect downloaders from the costs of digital disaster.

For example, we spoke to Churchill Insurance and found that it would cover up to £1,000 worth of downloads in addition to cost of replacing the host computer itself.

Similarly, Privilege Insurance told us it would cover any value of music downloads. Unlike Churchill, however, Privilege said it would expect claimants to prove they owned the downloads with purchase receipts. So make sure you keep physical copies or forward emailed receipts to a web-based email host.

Churchill said it would take download claims "in good faith" without requiring download receipts.

Sadly, there are still some insurance companies that remain behind the times.

Even though "change happenz", Zurich wasn't prepared to insure music downloads at all, and JS Insurance, which has a specialist computer insurance division, also told us it did not cover music downloads in any policy.

Before applying your John Hancock, then, it pays to read your insurance policy's small print to find out if it covers your music downloads.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
All aboard the Poo Bus! Ding ding, route Number Two departing
Only another three days of pooing and I can have a ride!
Heyyy! NICE e-bracelet you've got there ... SHAME if someone were to SUBPOENA it
Court pops open cans of worms and whup-ass in Fitbit case
Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads
Only 7 of 50 parliamentarians plump for Samsung Galaxy S
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
The IT Crowd's internet in a box gets $240k of crowdcash for a cause
'Outernet' project proposes satellite-fuelled 'Lantern' WiFi library for remote areas
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence
Download Choosing a Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence to learn more about cloud computing - the new opportunities and new security challenges.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.