Log on to Twitter to Catch Fraudsters

August 9, 2010 by  
Filed under Twitter Online Tips Featured

Car insurance companies are targeting social networking sites, particularly Twitter, in order to catch out fraudsters who are causing the cost of insurance premiums to rise at their fastest rate ever, according to the AA British Insurance Premium Index.

Apparently, insurers have been taking advantage of the rise of ‘tweeting’, using Twitter, but also Facebook and MySpace to investigate certain claims and find evidence. The news comes just as it has been announced that car insurance quotes : are showing the highest increase in years, since the Motoring Organisation started tracking trends of quarterly insurance premiums 16 years ago.

Over the last few months, the average cost of a comprehensive car insurance policy has increased to just over GBP 700, which is a rise of 11.5%. This is the average of the cheapest 3 policies for each customer, a measure which the AA refer to as the ‘Shoparound’ index. The fact that this is largely due to fraudulent claims is frustrating for the majority of drivers who treat the claim process properly and responsibly.

Andrew Goulborn, Commercial Director for motor insurance comparison site, Tiger.co.uk commented: ‘It is estimated that fraudulent claims like these are costing policyholders throughout the country an average of just over GBP 40 a year on their car insurance quotes : . Another reason why it is really vital for people to shop around for the best deal on their car insurance’.

The recent recession is thought to be a huge factor in the steep increase in insurance costs, as many unscrupulous individuals have contributed to the amount of fraudulent claims placed.

Twitter, but, is helping to expose the cheats who are abusing the system, as there is more constant streaming of shared information with people posting multiple messages all day long sometimes.

Richard Davies, a board member of the Insurance Fraud Bureau has claimed that the information on sites such as Twitter was very useful to insurance companies, as it could be used as evidence because it was publicly available on the internet. Many industry insiders who agree with him also add that the responsibility of the content falls to the social networking sites, as they are the ones in control of the privacy settings.

There are a couple of different types of fraudulent claims, which fall into categories of people who embellish the details of real claims for a larger payout and organised who make crashes, causing innocent people to be involved in accidents so that they can claim from them.

There are a number of law firms who have already reported successful investigative work using Twitter to ‘out’ fake claimants and are hopeful that it will continue to be a excellent way of ensuring claims are legitimate. Using ‘tweets’ as evidence in revealing fraudulent claims has already saved some firms thousands of pounds.

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