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ICBC cracking down on auto-insurance fraud

$600 million.

That’s how much auto insurance fraud costs British Columbians every year according to ICBC. It adds up to about $100 extra on your insurance annually.
ICBC says it is fighting back.

“We recently launched a new fraud analytics tool which is going to allow us to look through our claims data and find more fraud,” says Chris Fairbridge, manager of ICBC’s Special Investigation Unit. “We just want people to be aware that we are ramping up our efforts, taking action against fraud. We want to keep auto insurance rates as low as possible.”

While the high-tech tool should help catch more fraudsters, Fairbridge says they’ve made substantial progress since 2010.

“We’ve had over 550 fraud convictions. And what it means for people if they get caught and convicted is they may not be able to travel out of the country, they may not be able to get a loan. So there’s some significant penalties, up to and including jail.”

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Fraud detection and enforcement activities are expected to reduce ICBC’s claims costs by $44 million a year by 2019.

Last year, ICBC conducted close to 10,000 investigations into shady insurance claims.

Members of the public help as well. Following a public information campaign last year, ICBC saw a 70% increase in tips coming into their fraud line.

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