General Insurance Article - ABI launches Insurance Fraud Register

 Every week a staggering 2,670 fraudulent insurance claims worth £19m are being uncovered as insurers intensify their crackdown on insurance cheats according to an ABI report on insurance fraud published on Thursday. To further protect honest customers, the insurance industry launched the Insurance Fraud Register that will contain details of all known insurance fraudsters.

 The ABI report: ‘No Hiding Place-Insurance Fraud Exposed’ highlights that in 2011:
 -Insurers detected 139,000 bogus or exaggerated insurance claims, up 5% on 2010. The value of savings on these frauds was nearly £1bn-£983m-a rise of 7% on 2010.

 -Home insurance frauds were the most common with 71,000 dishonest claims, valued at £106m, detected.

 -Dishonest motor insurance claims were the most expensive with savings of £541m made from the 45,000 bogus claims uncovered. Fraudulent whiplash claims was the main factor for the rise.

 Speaking at the ABI’s tackling insurance fraud conference, Otto Thoresen, ABI’s director general, said “The industry makes no apologies for its zero tolerance approach to insurance fraud. Honest customers are sick of footing the bill for insurance cheats, through higher insurance premiums. From the highly organised ‘crash for cash’ motor scams to the opportunistic exaggeration of a genuine claim, insurers are determined to do what it takes to protect honest customers.

 The development of the Insurance Fraud Register marks a milestone in the fight against fraud. It reinforces the strong message that insurance cheats can expect difficulties in obtaining future insurance, credit and other financial products, as well as getting a criminal record.”

 Richard Davies from the ABI Financial Crime Committee, who led the working group that has developed the Register, said “The Insurance Fraud Register underlines the industry’s continuing commitment to reducing fraud and protecting honest customers. It complements the work of the Insurance Fraud Bureau in detecting fraud, and the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department in prosecuting fraudsters.

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