Would you let your insurer calculate your premiums based on your social media?

Welsh-based insurer Admiral has announced that it will analyse the personalities of first-time drivers by checking their Facebook profiles before offering them policies.

The scheme will be optional, but will see Admiral use an algorithm to examine social media pages to determine whether or not the customer is likely to be a careful driver. A ‘snapshot’ of their social media presence will be considered while they calculate a quote.

The algorithm used with include writing style and the use of accounting or calendar apps, amongst other analysis. The amount of information shared is optional, but a spokesperson for Admiral said “What we have access to will impact how we understand and calculate safety. New drivers are often quoted much higher insurance premiums as they have little driving history, zero no claims bonus and are viewed as ‘high risk’. But we want to help make sure safe drivers aren’t penalised and get the best price possible. To do this, we’ll look at your Facebook profile to help us get a better understanding of the type of driver you are.”

So why would you risk your insurer having a nose through your social media? Well, the firm says that those who opt in could receive a discount of up to 15% on their premiums – if, of course, they’re thought to be of a careful disposition.

However, Renate Samson, the Chief Executive of Big Brother Watch, a civil liberties pressure group, described the scheme as “terrifying”, saying “Kids are going to be handing over information with no real knowledge about how it is going to be used. How can you really tell if someone is a good or bad driver based on your Facebook page?”

Would you let your insurer calculate your premium price based on your social media? Let us know either in the comments below, or on Twitter at @Liftshare!

Author Lex Barber


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