Major UK insurer Admiral has announced that it will use data garnered from Facebook profiles to help set insurance premiums for first-time drivers.
The company intends to examine Facebook data including likes and posts for safe driver indicators: writing in short, concrete sentences and making concrete plans with friends using specific times and dates, rather than just ‘tonight’, for example, can show that a person is conscientious and well-organized, as can the use of lists.
These traits are associated with safer drivers, who are less likely to file a claim with the company. Yossi Borenstein, the principal data scientist for the project, noted that the indicators of safe drivers are constantly evolving. “Our algorithm for calculating what ‘safe’ looks like is constantly learning, as we match social data to actual claims data.”
The program has already caused a storm of controversy, with some privacy rights activist groups noting that the program violates Facebook’s Platform Policy, Section 3.15, which clearly says,”Don’t use data obtained from Facebook to make decisions about eligibility, including whether to approve or reject an application or how much interest to charge on a loan.”