The £5.28m fine handed out by the UK regulator to Liberty Mutual last week fired two warning shots across the bows of the insurance sector. This week's blog post examines their repercussions for insurers.
Actuaries are approaching an ethical crossroads, where the opportunities of data and analytics will meet a new era of accountability in insurance. How they respond will set the scene for how trust in insurance develops over the next five years.
Are conflicts of interest in insurance being taken seriously enough? It’s a question that needs to be addressed, given recent headlines. So what should insurance firms check for when it comes to being better at conflicts of interest? Here are nine suggestions.
In the midst of demanding situations and time pressures, there will be occasions when it will be important that we make a fair decision. What can we do to make this as easy and straightforward as possible? Here are two skills that will help.
The most ‘ethically questionable’ practice to have emerged out of the innovation currently transforming insurance is ‘claims optimisation’. As key pieces of accountability and data legislation go live in 2018, what should claims directors weigh up in relation to this controversial practice?
We need to think differently about trust in insurance. Digitisation makes this more important, not less. Firms need to organise their thinking, and not just leave trust to chance. If there’s a new ‘trust story’ to be told, it’s insurers who need to write it, before someone else does in their place.
Insurance is being transformed not by data or analytics, but by personalisation. Yet personalisation has some inherent flaws, which I examine in this post. What we could end up with is a cauldron of disruption, fuelled not by innovation, but mistrust.
Researchers have found clear evidence of gender bias in artificial intelligence. The growing use of AI by insurers means that the sector needs to address this quickly, in order to maintain public trust and avoid regulatory scrutiny.
Insurers want to share claims data in order to improve the accuracy of their new analytics systems. It sounds quite straightforward, but lift the lid and it’s a proposition with several ethical implications.
Tackling fraud is an ethical thing to do, but the way in which insurers tackle it has an ethical side too. Here are 14 ethical questions for insurance fraud people to consider, along with a look forward into a new era of accountability.
Privacy in insurance has been getting lots of attention recently, largely because of the EU’s GDPR. Yet there’s a danger that this surge in legal and compliance activity will overly focus minds on the policy and process detail, while leaving scant time to think through the big privacy issues that the insurance buying public is concerned about.
Part 5 in my series about ethics and insurance claims. Ethical culture is at the heart of how staff engage with claimants and determines the conclusions about fairness and trust that claimants are left with.
For the insurance sector, being in a conflict of interest is like having the flu – there’s nothing unethical about it; it’s just something that happens to us all. So the ethical question to be addressed is not how you avoid conflicts of interest, but how you recognise and respond to them.
This is the first in a series of posts about the ethical issues associated with insurance claims. I’m going to start off with what is probably the most significant of all such ethical issues, information asymmetry.
Insurance claims are pivotal experiences in the relationship between the insurer and the policyholder. In a series of posts, I'll be exploring the key ethical issues associated with insurance claims, starting this week with information asymmetry.
How well have insurers been managing the balance between the privacy concerns that surveillance can give rise to and the need to effective counter fraud measures? And what's in it for the insurance sector for doing so?
Surveillance is one of the key privacy issues that insurers need to pay attention to. In this post, I’ll outline why surveillance can be so unsettling and later this week, set out why it’s an issue that insurers need to manage carefully.
Secondary use has been a problematic ethical issue for insurers, causing the motor market to be labelled as dysfunctional. It creates a tension for insurers that needs to be resolved in order for trust to be rebuilt.
Over the next 5 years, I believe tensions between the insurance industry and the general public around privacy issues will grow to be as controversial as the misselling of payment protection insurance is today. This is the first of a series of posts exploring privacy and insurance.
If a policyholder takes steps to reduce the risk, surely that's a good thing. This doesn't seem to be the case with flood insurance. Insurers want to rely on big structural defences. It's an approach inherent with dangers, not least that it might not work.
Today's launch of the Insurance Fraud Register represents a big step for the UK insurance sector, not least in how it has to now deliver a necessary service in a fair and transparent way. Several issues have clearly been resolved, but others remain to put support from the public at risk.
The practices described in the recent OFT report into motor insurance may well have led to all sorts of unintended consequences for insurers. A couple are outlined here, along with some thoughts relating to a central issue for consumers: fairness.
A more detailed analysis of the ethics of what the OFT found when investigating motor insurance claims. Are referral fees unethical? How did corporate cultures appear to leave ethics by the wayside? The FSA and MoJ have some questions to ask, of individuals, insurers and themselves.
What should insurers do to resolve the question of who will own the data created by their use of telematics in products like motor? One particular step might make a real difference, if handled properly.
The second of two posts about the ethical dimension to how insurance fraud should be tackled. Insurers need to look at these six themes as a step towards securing the long term support of consumer groups, and the public at large, for this important initiative.
Tackling insurance fraud is an ethical thing to do, but the way in which insurers go about tackling it also has an ethical dimension. In this and a subsequent post, I set out the key themes around which a set of principles could be fashioned to embed some ethical thinking into how insurers tackle fraud.
As three insurers plead guilt in an Irish court to having information obtained illegally by a private investigator, is it now time for the insurance sector to see a clearer and stronger tone from the top to drive out these practices once and for all?
I explore how the move of larger adjusting firms to a multidisciplinary model could have weakened the profession's handling of conflicts of interest and compare this with the experience of accountancy firms. It's clear that perceptions matter and a 'trust us' response is insufficient
The insurance sector needs to take great care in how it manages the use of private investigators on potentially fraudulent claims, otherwise it could find its ethics sliding down the same slippery slope as the media