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NHS Warns NHS Staff and Key Workers at Risk of Car Insurance Scam

Yet another set of fraudsters are taking advantage of the lockdown and the coronavirus. They seem to be selling false car insurance coverage via social media accounts. IFB chiefs have warned that key workers may be the targets of these fraudsters due to a man in London being arrested on suspicion he was selling the scheme to NHS workers.

Stephen Dalton, Head of Intelligence and Investigations at the IFB said, “We’re pleased to have made positive progress alongside our enforcement partners at City of London Police’s IFED.

“Ghost broking has far-reaching consequences for innocent victims – not only does it leave people out of pocket, but it means they’re driving without valid insurance and could have their car seized.

“[This] is the last thing people need – especially key workers – during these challenging times.

“If anyone has seen suspicious car insurance deals being advertised online, they should make us aware by reporting it to our confidential Cheatline service.”

 

What is Ghost Broking?

This is a scheme used by fraudsters to sell what appears to be cheap car insurance, which are is really a false insurance policy. The scam can work in two different ways, both that leave motorists with no car insurance coverage.

Real policies may be bought from insurance companies but using false information. Once these policies have been purchased, they can then be sold to customers. However, insurance is false and will not cover customers. These policies are based on factors that determine a customer’s risk assessment for the insurance provider.

False information or discrepancies on the policies allow the insurance company to invalidate the agreement, and then insurance providers refuse to pay for any claims that have been filed as the result of an accident.

The scam may also use documents that appear valid and as if they’ve been issued by real insurance companies.

Detective Chief Inspector Edelle Michaeles, Head of the City of London Police’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED) has warned drivers to be watchful of insurance prices online that seem too good to be true. Ms. Michaeles said buying a ghost broking policy would in the end cost motorists more in the long-term, even if the low prices are enticing.

She said, “Fraudsters have no qualms in using national tragedies, including Covid-19, to try and exploit innocent members of the public and in this targeting even members of our NHS and so it is vital that people remain wary.

“We are determined to continue operational activity to target suspected insurance criminals and protect the public.

“We would always encourage drivers to be wary of heavily discounted prices they see online, such as social media.

“Whilst cheap offers may be tempting, purchasing car insurance through a ghost broker will end up costing you far more in the long run – both financially and in points on your license.”

Motorists who have purchased a false insurance policy could face fines up to a £300 fixed penalty notice by police.

Those who have bought the false insurance coverage will need to purchase a new, valid car insurance policy, and could be charged £150 to have their car removed from a pound if it was seized.

If you’ve been the victim of such a scheme, then contact Cheatline online at www.insurancefraudbureau.org or by phone at 0800 422 0421.

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