ABI postpones launch of anti-fraud system

Insurance fraud specialists are angry at the ABI's decision to delay the launch of its industry wide anti-fraud database.

The project is on hold while a new system is developed, incorporating the Motor Insurance Anti-fraud and Theft Register (MIAFTR) and the Claims and Underwriting Exchange (CUE).

The stalling of the proposed anti-fraud database has caused frustration among fraud specialists who see the exchange of information as crucial in the insurance industry's fight against fraud.

The ABI was expected to announce a decision on the preferred supplier for the new database by the end of last September. But ABI head of financial crime prevention Debra Weekes admitted that the launch of the database had been postponed.

She said: "There has been a slight delay of a few months as the anti-fraud database has been incorporated into a bigger IT project."

The ABI said the new IT project would bring the anti-fraud database as well as other industry databases, including MIAFTR and CUE, into a "more streamlined system".

Weekes said the two companies on the shortlist of potential suppliers for the database, Experian and CSC, were still in contention for the contract.

Insurance fraud experts have expressed disappointment at the delay.

"It's vital that the industry gets the anti-fraud database up and running as soon as possible," said one fraud investigator.

The list of potential suppliers of the database was reduced from four to two last August when IBM and ISO were excluded.