Insurers in Risk of Being Cut Out of Insurance by Digital Tools

Insurers are in danger of being cut out of insurance by digital tools, says Price Waterhouse Cooper’s digital experience lead partner Nick Spooner.

“For hundreds of years, the insurance industry has been inert. Its processes and products worked; it simply didn’t need to change,” Mr Spooner was quoted by InvestorDaily.

“Insurtech is changing that. What we think of insurance today will soon be unrecognisable.”

Spooner was quoted by InvestorsDaily that the rise in personalized, usage-based and on-demand products are examples of disruption to traditional forms of cover available to consumers.

“Insurtech is promising even more granular cover, such as with insurtech start-up TikkR, which aims to insure moments with ‘shields’ of protection. For instance, someone who frequents public transport might choose to protect themselves between work and home, with a mix of life, accident and theft insurance, which kicks in during travel hours.”

Meanwhile, digital brokers allow users to upload or import policies from different insurers and manage them on their phone, while artificial intelligence can generate advice on their entire insurance portfolio, Mr Spooner said.

“This analysis could identify double-ups in cover, gaps to be filled or suggest other products (or insurers) that might be more suitable,” he said.

Spooner advised that current insurers look to blockchain which offers “transformational possibilities” when it comes to documentation management.

“The use of AI-based smart contracts – agreements, such as an insurance policy, that self-execute when certain conditions are met – combined with blockchain, could lead to a reduction in operating costs and accelerated processing time,” Mr Spooner said.

“That, for instance, has created a platform where risks can be insured without the need for physical documentation.”

Mr Spooner said with the rise in use of digital devices that work to prevent the very thing consumers seek compensation for, the role and nature of insurance will change.

“With less risk, the nature of insurance will need to change as traditional risk models cease to apply,” he said.

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