Some feedback on those ABI stats on insurance fraud;
Commenting on the publication of the ABI’s fraud report, Matthew Maxwell Scott, executive director of ACSO, said:
“It’s great to see a further drop in fraud, and we welcome the efforts of IFED and the industry in keeping the pressure up on fraudsters. However, with the cost of living crisis upon us, fraudsters will be hard at work and there must be no let up in cross industry co-operation to combat a likely increase in this form of crime.
We are publishing our own report into fraud shortly, in which we call for the industry to reconvene the Insurance Fraud Taskforce (IFT). The IFT report was originally published in 2016 and reviewed briefly in 2018, but there has been no industry-wide review of the report’s 26 recommendations to determine how many have been actioned and what the results have been.
Maxwell Scott said that, more than five years on from the Taskforce, fraud still costs the industry well over £1bn annually. The ABI’s 2022 fraud report says that insurers uncovered £1.1bn of fraudulent in 2021. In 2016 the number was £1.3bn. “A 15% fall in fraudulent claims over eight years is welcome progress, but the cost of living crisis risks that fall reversing.”
“Some of those 26 recommendations have been enacted, such as the whiplash reforms, or beefing up CMC regulation, and the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) is a far more dynamic body now than five years ago. But some IFT recommendations have fallen by the wayside, and now that we are facing a cost of living crisis, insurers themselves are warning that fraud may well be on the rise again.
He pointed to recent news from Zurich that property fraud jumped by 25% in the first six months of the year, driven, it said, by increases in the cost of living
Fraud affects the whole industry, and thus needs industry wide solutions, including from the claimant sector, which is also affected by fraud and needs to do more to combat it.
The government-backed IFT was groundbreaking in bringing all parties together to tackle fraud for the first time, and eight years on, we think the IFT is needed once again.”