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How you can spot a ‘ghost dealer’ and keep away from an insurance coverage nightmare

How you can spot a ‘ghost dealer’ and keep away from an insurance coverage nightmare

Unsuspecting drivers might imagine they’ve bagged a cut price on their automotive insurance coverage as costs have rocketed, however they might have been duped by a ‘ghost dealer’. Listed here are the crimson flags to be careful for.

Fraud circumstances have greater than doubled for the reason that pandemic, with 21,149 fraud and cybercrime offences reported to the Nationwide Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) between April 2022 and March 2023.

‘Ghost broking’ is without doubt one of the most prevalent kinds of fraud in the case of automotive insurance coverage.

Faux motor insurance coverage offers, or ghost broking scams, contain criminals pretending to be brokers in a bid to supply unsuspecting drivers low-cost insurance policies. However they’re solely faux and imply individuals are neglected of pocket and are driving with out legitimate insurance coverage.

Victims can face legal expenses for driving with out legitimate insurance coverage in addition to a wonderful, penalty factors, and potential automobile seizure.

Ghost brokers also can pose a cyber risk as they harvest the sufferer’s private info to take out insurance policies beneath the names of people – akin to skilled older drivers who normally have cheaper insurance coverage – as a way to forge and promote on insurance policies in different individuals’s names.

These crimes typically go unreported, with simply two out 5 (43%) of fraud victims reporting the crime to the authorities. Certainly, solely 7.5% of cybercrime victims reported the fraud between April 2022 and 2023.

In a bid to assist motorists spot the indicators and report insurance coverage fraud, One Positive Insurance coverage has revealed prime ideas to make sure you’re not haunted by a ‘ghost dealer’ on-line:

Unbelievable faux bargains

Ghost brokers lure you in with too-good-to-be-true offers. If an insurance coverage quote appears unrealistically low-cost, it most likely isn’t real.

In keeping with the Affiliation of British Insurers (ABI), the common value of automotive insurance coverage within the three months to June surged to a report excessive of £511.

Social media and WhatsApp

Fraudsters and ghost brokers typically function by way of social media platforms or WhatsApp. They normally don’t have an expert web site or contact info past simply cellular numbers.

If you happen to can’t see a professional web site or enterprise cellphone quantity, then it’s a serious crimson flag.

No FCA authorisation

Actual insurance coverage brokers are authorised by the Monetary Conduct Authority (FCA). Insurers and brokers will clearly present this info on their web sites. Ghost brokers is not going to be traceable on the FCA’s register.

If you happen to nonetheless have a intestine feeling you’re speaking to a scammer, double-check the FCA database on-line through its official web site.

Dodgy paperwork

Be cautious of blurry or unprofessional-looking coverage paperwork. Genuine insurance coverage suppliers produce high-quality data and paperwork with out wonky fonts, pixelated photographs, and spelling and grammar errors.

How you can report insurance coverage fraud

If you happen to assume you could have noticed an insurance coverage rip-off on-line or suspect you’ve been bought a fraudulent coverage, contact your insurer and report it instantly to:

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