It is disappointing to learn that progress on the ABI's much lauded anti-fraud database has suffered from the delays that you report (15 January, Insurance Times).

As a former member of the ABI's fraud committee, I know that the most vital thing now is for the industry to develop a strong sense of urgency and implement a solution that will allow us to start the battle against organised fraudsters.

Data-sharing initiatives form a large part of our armoury against this group, and only by working collaboratively will we achieve this aim.

The issue becomes ever more critical as other financial sectors are tackling the problem and thereby displacing the problem to the insurance sector. Fraudsters are finding it harder to perpetrate benefit fraud, credit card or mortgage fraud but easier to attack insurance companies.

The mortgage, credit card and loans markets use data-sharing to prevent and save millions of pounds every day.

Their use of identity validation, data-matching and fraud databases, such as the CIFAS database, has meant that fraudsters are identified prior to the loss in 87% of cases. Our industry is a long way from this.

The organised fraudsters know that we are vulnerable, so it is surely time that we took action and started to whittle away at a problem that amounts to £4.5m every day.

Bill Trueman
Absolute Customer Management