Ghost Brokers are fraudsters who sell illegitimate car insurance by using sites that appear genuine, and offer lucrative deals to lure in potential victims. This is typically carried out by forging insurance documents or falsifying your information to lower the price. As such, targets most susceptible to ghost broking are individuals with high insurance premiums such as young men.
Other common methods of contact are often direct messages on social media platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram as well as adverts in local newspapers or fliers in which they can remain anonymous.
The consequences of buying an illegitimate policy carry the same risks as having no policy:
• 6 penalty points
• Having the vehicle seized with possible vehicle destruction
• £150 minimum to retrieve impounded vehicle
• Fixed penalty notice of £300
• Liable for claims costs
Since 2016, the police have received more than 850 reports, with victims losing an estimated total of £631,000.
As a result, here are a few tips on how to avoid becoming a victim of ghostbroking:
• If a deal seems too good to be true, then it probably is
• Be wary of brokers using only mobile or email as a form of contact. Fraudsters wish to remain untraceable after a scam
• If you are not certain about a broker, check on the Financial Conduct Authority or British Insurance Broker’s Association website for a list of all authorised insurance brokers at register.fca.org.uk and biba.org.uk
• You can also check to see if your car is insured on the Motor Insurance Database: ownvehicle.askmid.com