Money & Banking

Customer data portability to be introduced in insurance sector

G Naga Sridhar Hyderabad | Updated on August 02, 2018 Published on August 02, 2018

Move by IRDAI to ensure continuity of benefits for users

It may soon be possible to take your data with you when you change your insurance company for continuity of benefits.

A panel on innovations in insurance and insurance technology and related regulatory aspects, formed by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), has recommended portability of customer data when a customer moves from one insurer to another.

Short-term products

This will come in handy in the case of short-term products in non-life and health insurance. From a customer’s point of view, this ensures the continuity of benefits, which are based on data, such as no-claim bonus, disease or medical history.

An agency such as the Insurance Information Bureau of India could create the required mechanism for a repository to capture industry data related to insurance customers/policies.

“The consent of the customer to share data is a must,” it recommended. The committee has also suggested that insurers may be allowed to capture data as per their product requirements, and they should mention all data elements they wish to capture as part of their product-filing procedure with the regulator.

However, to ensure standardisation of data capture across insurers for the creation of repository of generic data to benefit all, the basic standard data elements could be worked upon by the General and Life Insurance Councils, it added.

Stating that technology “could disrupt insurance business model and the insurer landscape”, the working group said big technology firms, with their technological and analytical advantage, will squeeze out traditional insurers.

Customer protection

The regulator, too, needs to reassess the existing guidelines to ensure that customers are adequately protected. “As the risk profile changes, it would be necessary to ensure that regulatory framework continues to adequately capture it,” it said.

The IRDAI is currently examining these recommendations, and is likely to come out with its decisions soon.

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Published on August 02, 2018
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