Norwich firm hails landmark success for its fraud software

Chief Executive Mike Srokowski of insurance-related business Validus. .
Photo: Simon Finlay
Copy: 
For: EDP News
EDP pics © 2009
(01603) 772434 Chief Executive Mike Srokowski of insurance-related business Validus. . Photo: Simon Finlay Copy: For: EDP News EDP pics © 2009 (01603) 772434

Wednesday, April 23, 2014
9:00 AM

Norwich insurance services firm Validus-IVC has hailed the success of its pioneering software in exposing fraudsters.

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The anti-fraud search engine AskLudo, developed four years ago at its Princes Street offices, has reached a landmark one million searches - identifying in the course of them nearly £20m worth of erroneous or fraudulent claims.

The software is used on behalf of insurance companies to comb Validus’s database of information and spot the anomoly of a hire care apparently being lent to more than one crash victim at the same time.

Over its four years of use, it has exposed nearly 7,000 such cases, representing more than 58,000 days of overlapping hire.

Mike Srokowski, chief executive of Validus, a former EDP Future 50 company which now employs more than 150 staff, said: “Every 24 hours AskLudo cross checks the claims data submitted by insurers against all existing claims in the database, which automatically identifies overlapping matching claims where the same vehicle appears on different claims at the same time.”

While the identification of this anomaly was compelling in itself, it also shed possible light on fraudsters who might be undertaking other insurance cons such as false personal injury claims.

The number of confirmed matches identified by the system was continuing to increase as a greater proportion of the market’s claims were added to the system, he added.

“We are adding over 12,000 claims to the database each month, and the more data we receive, the more powerful it becomes in spotting potential frauds,” he said.

Mr Srokowski said that once a match was spotted, the AskLudo subscriber received an alert, and could either commission the Validus Claims Investigation Unit (CIU) to investigate the case, or choose to buy the details and carry out their own inquiries.

He said: “We have identified numerous fraud rings as a direct result of overlapping hire.”

He cited one case where the same prestige vehicle had allegedly been supplied to no fewer than eight individuals at the same time with a combined claimed credit hire value in excess of £200,000.

Thirty-seven organisations, including major insurers and solicitors, are using the technology.

Validus began trading in 2008 and is now used by about 80pc of the UK’s motor insurers. In March last year the business went through a management buyout by Lloyds Development Capital, a leading UK private equity house, since when it has gone from strength to strength, growing by 30pc during the past 12 months.

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