With insurance digitisation, buying multiple policies and non-disclosure is a thing of the past

With insurance digitisation, buying multiple policies and non-disclosure is a thing of the past  16th March 2023

Unfortunate events are a constant risk that one must always be prepared for. While you may have an optimistic view of the future, the financial implications of a mishap are always too heavy to burden. Online general insurance is a financial product that comes in the clutch in such uncertainties to protect policyholders after paying a comparatively meagre premium. With the demand for insurance growing daily, the insurance sector constantly evolves to provide better services, more values, stringent regulations, and preventive mechanisms to tackle fraud.

Initially sold as a safety mechanism, online general insurance policies are now seen as more than they offer at face value. They are seen as investments, tax-saving opportunities, and more. However, some policyholders try to take advantage of loopholes in the policy wording to derive the most significant benefit by defrauding insurance companies by resorting to means like improper disclosure of facts, misrepresentation, etc.

With the recent wave of digitisation, the insurance regulatory authorities are setting their foot down and laying the framework for a transparent and non-conducive ecosystem for insurance fraud.

The issue.
Over the years, the insurance sector has seen an extreme change, from witnessing the risk-averse masses to offering facilitative services like online general insurance that are convenient for consumers with the benefits of additional features.

However, over time, the scope of the policies is being misinterpreted, leading policyholders to purchase multiple covers to increase their net insured sum payout. This has been noticed especially in the case of online general insurance, where various policies from multiple insurers are purchased to enhance the total payout.

The primary concern in such a situation is that each asset has a fixed value determined by careful expert assessment and evaluation. After risk evaluation, the premium, coverage extent, etc., are decided. Policyholders purchase multiple policies to override this constraint on the payout and often do not disclose the same to the existing insurer.

Another reason that caused the lack of complete data availability with insurers is the intense and duplicate paperwork. Customers used to skip several essential fields due to redundant questions and excessive effort.

The solution.
During times of heavy dependency on paperwork, it was difficult for insurers to identify such cases until the point of raising a claim. However, with technological advancements and the onset of the digital era, the insurance sector is not left behind in upgrading its ecosystem to tackle such concerns.

The account aggregator system, which is now applicable for all non-banking financial companies, data sharing concerning customers' investments and savings is set to transform the information availability for insurance providers.

The account aggregator system will make all relevant data available to authorised bodies electronically. The use of e-insurance accounts (e-IA) will only facilitate the process. While the e-IA, a digital portfolio of insurance policies held by an individual, is for the policyholder's benefit, the aggregator system makes all the necessary data accessible in a few simple clicks to prevent over-insurance, fact-check disclosures, and reduce paperwork.

The concerns.
Anywhere that data sharing takes place is seen as a significant concern due to the constant risk of data leaks, especially when dealing with such confidential information. However, the RBI has already announced and laid the foundation for an institution to take care of data collection and protection to assure policyholders and protect their interests.

As we progress technologically, we will be in a better position to respond to the dynamic demand across various sectors, of which insurance is one. Policyholders must take extra caution while evaluating and purchasing online general insurance policies to ensure their safety and comply with the relevant regulations.

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Disclaimer: The information provided above is for illustrative purposes only. To get more details, please refer to policy wordings and prospectus before purchasing a policy.