Consider these tips so you don’t get blown away by fraud.
Check references, licensing and get competitive estimates. Always make sure you know who you are dealing with and charges are fair.
Be cautious about promises of quick service and stocked materials for savings, especially after major storms. Scammers know what to say in desperate times — avoid promises that sound too good to be true.
Offering to waive deductibles may be illegal. Know your state laws, don’t let a desperate situation turn into a permanent nightmare for you or your family.
Avoid demands for high advance payments for work. Reasonable advance payments are normal, demands for high up-front deposits warn of fraud.
Some contractors will actually cause or try to increase damage. Most are honest, but shady contractors may try to take advantage of the situation.
Read contracts carefully and avoid signing away your rights to your insurance coverage to third parties. You may find yourself in a lawsuit you never authorized. Take the time to look over and understand the contract before signing it. It will be to your advantage to do so.
Awareness is your best defense against insurance scammers and hackers who want to steal your information.
Most cybercrimes involve identity theft. Criminals steal personal information to hack accounts and access funds. Identity theft can lead to insurance fraud. Here are come common scams.
Phishing — Scammers impersonate legitimate entities using malicious emails and texts to trick you into giving them your sensitive information. If you suspect a phishing attack, contact the proper entity directly to verify the request is real.
Formjacking — Cyber scammers hack a legitimate website to steal user information. Each time a customer fills out a form, a duplicate of the entered information is sent to the scammer. Contact the company if you supect formjacking.
False Quizzes — Swindlers use surveys and quizzes to pry loose personal data. Launching a quiz app may give permission to pull information from your social media profile or phone, giving hackers an opening to steal your identity.
Public Wi-Fi — Using public Wi-Fi at coffee shops, libraries, or other locations puts you at risk for having information stolen. Avoid storing sensitive information on your phone and never share personal information over public Wi-Fi.
The Utah Insurance Department’s Fraud Division is cautioning Utah drivers about potential car insurance fraud that may take place during the current health crisis.
Staged Accidents: Scammers set you up for an accident to make an insurance claim. Fewer drivers mean fewer witnesses.
Auto Repair Fraud: Scammers charge excessive fees for disinfecting & cleaning vehicles due to COVID-19. Be suspicious of high fees for cleaning and storage.
Phantom Victims: People not in the car during the accident attempt to file injury claims, hoping for a quick settlement with no investigation. Make sure to exchange ALL relevant information after an accident.
Be vigilant, and contact the Fraud Division if you believe you may have been a victim of insurance fraud.