Smartdriverclub hunts ghost-brokers

Smartdriverclub Insurance has seen a 14% rise in policies that have been ghost-brokered over the past year.

In response, the insurance provider is using its data analytics skills to identify trends in proposer details that have been common to ghost brokered policies, to filter out suspect insurance applications, prior to policy inception.

Where Smartdriverclub identifies a possible attempt by a ghost broker to secure cover, the ‘customer’ is driven to the phone line to complete the quote and payment transaction. At this point security checks reveal the identity of the policyholder is fake.

Smartdriverclub Insurance has established a customer profile used by ghost-brokers which includes low risk occupations such as nurses, local government workers and accountants, a good level of No Claims Discount and always the addition of a named driver. This will be the genuine and usually unwitting motorist who has been lured by the promise of a low insurance premium by the ghost broker.

Ghost brokers are fraudsters who set themselves up to look like legitimate insurance brokers. They offer low cost insurance, usually for cash. They then buy a policy using a stolen identity, often using a stolen credit card. The customer is noted on the policy as a named driver. They are given the motor insurance certificate and the car then becomes registered as insured.  Unless the payment card comes back as stolen, cover is in place.  Even if the policy is cancelled, the customer still has the motor insurance certificate.

Penny Searles, CEO of Smartdriverclub said, ‘It is relatively easy for someone to set up a policy using a stolen identity and using the purchaser of the policy as the named driver. As soon as we identify that the policy has been ghost brokered, we cancel the cover but by this point the fraudster has the motor insurance certificate and can pass this on to the innocent motorist.’