Motorists warned of 'ghost broking', as 70% of drivers are unaware of the practice
Don't get caught out.
A number of drivers (39%) across Ireland say they have been approached by fraudulent ‘ghost brokers’, new research shows.
Ghost broking is a practice of fraudsters appearing as insurance brokers and selling forged or invalid insurance policies to unsuspecting consumers.
According to new research by Liberty Insurance, one in three motorists (32%) have not taken any steps to verify that their insurance broker is regulated.
The insurance company warned that ghost brokers "may use social media groups or classified advertisements on sites used for individuals selling items".
Often, they may not have a business email and use their own account. They also may only use a mobile number, as they have no business landline, or even use WhatsApp.
Almost four in ten (39%) have been directly approached by a ghost broker, either in person or via social media, and a further three per cent know someone who has, according to Liberty’s research.
Particularly, ghost brokers often target immigrant communities, who may be less aware of the operation of the insurance market in Ireland.
Claims and operations leader for Liberty Insurance in Europe, María Eugenia Muguerza, said: "Ghost broking is a real issue that needs to be tackled for the sake of consumers, of whom almost 40% of those aware of the practice report having been approached, and for legitimate insurance providers and brokers.
"This is why Liberty is calling on our fellow insurance providers and online platforms such as social media companies in Ireland to support this consumer awareness campaign to ensure customers are educated on the practice of ghost broking and how to avoid falling victim to it."