The case in which the ex-insurance employee has been jailed marks a first for IFED

Fraud motor

A former LV= employee has been jailed for receiving a bribe after confidential information was leaked to a claims management company.

This is the first time that the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED) officers have had a successful conviction under the Bribery Act.

Stephen Karl Oates, from Bournemouth who worked for LV= at the time of the offence has been sentenced to 12 months.

Yesterday at Bournemouth Crown Court, Aisha Elliott from Yeovil who worked for a claims management company Elkador Finance, was also sentenced to 12 months for offering the bribe.

Early in 2015 LV= asked IFED to investigate Elliott and Oates after the insurer suspected that one of its computer systems had been accessed and information sold.

Oates worked for LV= in its third party team as a consultant.

LV=’s suspicions were raised when contacted by a third party enquiring about their hire car. Checks by LV= found that they had not repaired this individual’s car and therefore would not be offering a hire car.

The third party claimed that he was contacted by a company called ‘Select’ who were in possession of his customer details and had offered him a courtesy car.

Following this call, a full audit of LV=’s Third Party team was undertaken and it was discovered that Oates had been selling customer data in order to make a personal profit.

Each time he sold personal data to Elliott at Elkador Finance Ltd and she made a successful claim, Oates would earn £150.

Oates admitted to police that he had been writing personal data on pieces of paper and providing these to Elliott at her home.

At one point Oakes was supplying Elliott with at least seven names a week, receiving more than £1000 for the information.

IFED detective chief inspector Oliver Little said: “The outcome shows how it is possible to work closely with the insurance industry to ensure that criminal cases such as these are thoroughly investigated and that the culprits are brought to justice.

”This case should act as a warning to all insurers and highlight the fact that there are a number of unscrupulous fraudsters out there who will target insurance staff to try and get customer data and information from them.”

“The consequences for those who involve themselves in this sort of activity are extremely serious and we will continue to work with insurers to target the very small minority that do this.”