New unit to tackle insurance fraud

Fraud tag in filing cabinet. | Newsreel
The Insurance Council of Australia has launched a new counter-fraud initiative. | Photo: Oliver Le Moal (iStock)

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has launched a new counter-fraud initiative headed up by a veteran cybercrime detective.

ICA CEO Andrew Hall said undetected fraud was estimated to be costing the insurance industry around $400 million a year.

“In 2023, ICA members detected $560 million (worth of) cases of opportunistic insurance fraud for motor and property alone,” Mr Hall said.

He said fraud drove up insurance premiums and resulted in significant harm to customers and the economy.

The ICA’s new counter fraud and scams function will be headed up by Chief Executive Officer Andrew Gill.

“Andrew brings a wealth of experience in investigating insurance fraud, having served for 24 years as a detective in the fraud and cybercrime squad for the New South Wales Police and more recently as a Forensic Director at McGrathNicol,” Mr Hall said.

He said the counter fraud and scam function would provide an industry-wide capability focused on detecting organised fraud networks and identifying emerging fraud-related trends or criminal scams.

“The function will collaborate with ICA members to collect intelligence on organised fraud to increase the capability of insurers in detecting and stopping insurance fraud, in addition to working with governments and their agencies in their renewed efforts to combat and fraud scams.

“Andrew will lead the new function as it becomes a standalone entity, external to the ICA, working with insurers to reduce the cost of fraud and scams to insurance customers and the community,” Mr Hall said.