Insurance Fraud Bureau

Beware of Ghost Brokers

02 October 2019

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This October police forces across England, Wales and Northern Ireland are taking part in Operation Drive Insured which will see increased enforcement activity to detect and seize uninsured vehicles. As this op gets underway it’s more timely than ever to remind the public about the dangers of Ghost Broking to help more people avoid fraud and drive with valid insurance.  

 

What is Ghost Broking? 

Ghost Brokers are fraudsters who sell drivers apparently cheap motor insurance deals but issue policies that aren't worth the paper they're written on. 

Typically the scam works in one of two ways:

• Policies are bought from legitimate insurance companies using false information and then doctored before being sold on to customers
• Fake policy documents designed to look like they have been issued by legitimate insurance companies are created and sold on to customers

The consequences of buying a fake policy can be the same as having no policy at all:

• Your car may be seized by police
• You'll pay a fixed penalty notice of £300
• You'll have to buy valid insurance & pay at least £150 to get your car back from the pound
• You could be liable for any damage you cause while driving without insurance, which could include compensation if you injure someone

 

How to beat the fraudsters

To ensure you aren’t caught out, carry out essential checks before taking out a policy. This includes:

• Checking the seller has a legitimate website, a UK phone number and address
• If buying through a broker, check they’re registered with British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA)
• If buying directly through an insurer, check they’re a member of Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB)
• Check your insurance advisor is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

 

How to report a Ghost Broker

If you know or suspect someone of committing insurance fraud, you can report this via IFB's cheatline (powered by Crimestoppers) on 0800 422 0421 or a secure online form