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IFR delivering tangible benefits for customer

06 November 2014

  • Database helping to identify fraudsters and limit exposure
  • Ben Fletcher: “A perfect complement to existing industry resources”
  • Industry establishing strong consequences for insurance fraudsters

Early adopters of the Insurance Fraud Register (IFR) are seeing the benefits as the impact of the industry’s latest tool in the fight against fraud is felt.

The IFR is the first industry-wide database of known insurance fraudsters, which enables insurers to cross check their policy-holders against records on the database. Where that check identifies a fraudster, the insurer can take action and help limit the chances of being caught by fraud.

When one fraudster claimed for damage on their home insurance policy only one day after taking it out RSA was quick to investigate. Having established the facts and discovering that the damage had been caused prior to the insurance being bought, the policy was voided and the fraudster’s details placed on the IFR.

When that same fraudster took out a policy with a new provider, information on the IFR helped ensure they had all the facts and made sure the premiums reflected a shady past. The information on the IFR and the action taken by the new provider will send out a strong deterrent message if this individual was tempted to commit fraud in the future.

John Beadle, RSA UK Counter Fraud Manager comments, “Managing fraud is all about good quality information and the IFR is a welcome addition to our pool of data. By sharing data on the IFR we can stay one step ahead of the fraudsters and ensure that honest policyholders are protected from the actions of an unscrupulous few.”

Ben Fletcher, IFB Director, said, “The work of the IFB and IFED have given the industry a powerful means of detecting and disrupting fraud. The addition of the IFR is a perfect complement to existing industry resources and, by establishing serious consequences for proven fraudsters, should serve as a deterrent to anyone considering fraud as an easy option.”

The intention of the IFR is to establish very real consequences for fraudsters so it is essential that information is carefully managed. Even before a single record is loaded, IFR customers undergo a thorough on-boarding process and must comply with strict standards covering information security and quality. From the outset a very deliberate approach has been taken but 30% of the market is expected to be signed up and able to use the IFR by the end of this year, with many more of those who have already expressed an interest joining them in 2015.

Mark Allen, Fraud and Financial Crime Manager at the ABI said, “When the IFR went live at the end of 2013 we set out a clear plan and expectations for the first year.  We are on track against our plan and delivering results for the industry and protecting honest customers. This is only the beginning and benefits will increase as more insurers come on board and we look at extending the IFR to an even wider audience.”