Re. “Auto insurance reforms spark privacy concern,” Opinion, Nov. 24

EDMONTON, AB – Sharon Polsky’s column makes some assumptions about recent auto insurance reforms and privacy concerns that need to be clarified.

Alberta’s insurers take the privacy of its customers very seriously. As an industry that sells insurance designed to protect people and businesses from the financial repercussions often resulting from privacy breaches, they understand the importance of ensuring personal information remains personal.

Usage Based Insurance, or UBI, is an option consumers in other markets have to better control their insurance costs. It is a more accurate way to adjust insurance costs to actual driving habits. For some, such as a someone who only drives a short distance to run errands or someone who chooses to bike to work in the summer, UBI could result in savings on insurance premiums – and money back in their pockets.

Insurance companies offering UBI must abide by all relevant privacy legislation and follow rules set by the insurance regulator. Consumers adopting UBI as their insurance method can have confidence that the measures put in place will protect their information and privacy from unauthorized use.

Albertans will soon have the choice to take full advantage of UBI products to help control their auto insurance premiums. This is good thing, as now more than ever, households need as many tools as possible to reign in the seemingly ever-rising costs that go with daily life.

Celyeste Power, vice-president, western, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC)

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