Crash for cash scam explained by Insurance Fraud Bureau
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Birmingham was found to be the most affected region for “Crash for Cash” insurance scams which could put drivers at serious risk. Crash for cash is a common scam that sees fraudsters deliberately cause accidents to claim compensation.
This can include purposefully driving into innocent motorists in a desperate attempt to claim against their insurance policy.
IFB analysis of 2.7million motor insurance claims has identified over 170,00 of these could be linked to “Crash for Cash” networks.
Birmingham postcodes were listed as the top three most affected areas with B23, B34 and B8 topping the list.
A total of seven Birmingham postcodes were included in the top 30 areas affected with B27, B33, B11 and B28 also on the list.
Bradford was the second most affected region with two of its postcodes – BD7 and BD3 – making up the fourth and fifth most affected areas.
A total of seven Bradford postcodes were also listed with drivers who travel in BD8, BD15, BD2, BD5 and BD9 also at risk.
Ben Fletcher, Director at the Insurance Fraud Bureau said: “‘Crash for Cash’ fraudsters bring devastation to countless victims and increase motor insurance costs for us all.
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“The IFB’s hotspots analysis is a stark reminder that although great strides have been taken in tackling the problem, these car crash scams are all too common.
“As traffic levels return to normal following the national lockdown, ‘Crash for Cash’ fraudsters may look to make up for lost time.
“It is hoped that by shining a spotlight on the issue we will encourage road users to be alert and report any suspicious activity to the IFB’s Cheatline on 0800 422 0421.
“It is hoped that the announcement of the UK’s top ‘Crash for Cash’ hotspots will encourage communities to be vigilant as more drivers start to take to the roads.”
Other regions listed in the IFB’s top 10 list include Walsall, Blackburn and Romford.
Popular tourist regions such as Manchester, Leeds and North London also featured lower down the list.
IFB investigations have found single gangs can often be behind thousands of orchestrated attacks in a single area.
Experts warn the combined value of fraudulent claims has run into the millions.
Detective Chief Inspector Edelle Michaels, Head of the City of London Police’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED), said the fraud poses a “safety threat” to drivers.
He said: “‘Crash for Cash’ fraud is damaging to the public in many ways.
“Most critical is the threat it poses to the safety of road users, as criminals target innocent drivers by deliberately crashing into them.
“These induced collisions could have potentially grave consequences and the traumatic experience could have a lasting effect on the victim.
“We have seen time and time again that ‘Crash for Cash’ fraudsters do not care about the safety of their victims.”
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