The Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) is warning drivers to watch out for fraudsters selling fake car insurance on social media, as it reveals over 21,000 fraudulent motor insurance policies were reported to it by insurers in the past 12 months which could be linked to the scam. ‘Ghost Broking’ is a growing scam, which involves fraudsters pretending to be Brokers in order to sell unrealistically cheap and completely fake policies.
The bogus deals are often advertised via Facebook and Instagram with victims ranging from young and new drivers, to communities less familiar with UK insurance laws. The scam not only leaves victims out of pocket, but facing serious penalties for driving without insurance. The IFB – which acts as a central intelligence hub for insurers to tackle organised fraud – received reports of 21,169 fraudulent motor insurance policies in the past 12 months which could be linked to ‘Ghost Broking’ – equating to nearly 60 bogus policies being generated each day.
With 45 police forces executing Op Drive Insured this week in a national crackdown on uninsured motorists, the IFB is urging drivers to watch out for ‘Ghost Broking’ scams or face the consequences for driving without insurance.
Stephen Dalton, Head of Intelligence and Investigations at the IFB, said:
“Clearly, fraudsters are attempting to take out a high volume of fraudulent car insurance policies so they can profit at the expense of insurers and honest consumers. This is a serious problem and I believe the figures we’ve identified only begin to scratch the surface.
“With police forces upping their efforts to crackdown on uninsured driving, it’s essential that consumers aren’t tempted by ‘too good to be true’ car insurance deals on social media. They’re entirely fake and will result in the driver’s vehicle being seized for no insurance.
“If anyone has seen evidence of a suspicious motor insurance deal, it should be reported to our confidential Cheatline on 0800 422 0421 or at www.insurancefraudbureau.org.”
Detective Chief Inspector Edelle Michaels, Head of the City of London Police’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED), said:
“The Op Drive Insured campaign has been an important reminder to the public of the consequences of driving uninsured. Whilst some drivers may knowingly be uninsured, there are many who do not realise that they are driving without valid insurance, having purchased their policy through a ‘Ghost Broker’.
“IFED has investigated a number of cases in 2021 which have exposed the immoral tactics used by these criminals to catch out their victims, including two young men who took advantage of their peers being charged high insurance premiums, and an individual who pretended to help those looking to insure their first vehicle in the UK.
“It really is crucial to check that the person you are speaking with is the real deal. It is quick and easy to find out if a broker is authoriser, simply check the FCA or BIBA website – it could end up saving you a lot of money and help you to avoid issues in the long run.”
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