Have you heard of ghost broking?

Published 30th May 2024
Ghost broking is when fraudsters sell fake car insurance policies at cheap prices to unsuspecting customers. It can be a scary situation as you won’t realise you’ve been targeted by a ghost broker, and the consequences can be severe.

The police can stop you for driving without insurance and issue you a fine, penalty points or even seize your car. Worse still, if you’re involved in an accident and make a claim, you’ll find out you don’t have any cover at all.

We’re here to help make sure you can spot these ghost broking scams and let you know what to do if it happens to you.
Ghost brokers tend to target young drivers and other people who have little or no experience getting car insurance. They’ll also target people who aren’t fluent in English as well as high risk drivers looking to make a saving on their premiums.

These scammers look for, and often target, unsuspecting victims on social media, money-saving forums or student websites.

You might be looking for a cheap deal but could end up getting sold a policy that’s worthless. A major tell-tale sign is if your insurance premium is significantly lower than you’d expect. In other words, if it looks too good to be true then there’s a good chance it is.
This is when an insurance policy is bought using your name but with fake information to make it cheaper. Details like driving experience, postcode, the car insured or even your job title are changed. The policy is fraudulent and the policyholder has no idea.

Here, real insurance documents are used but they’ve been changed to include another driver’s details. It may look like you have an insurance policy but, in fact, there’s nothing in your name.

A ghost broker might buy a real policy on your behalf with all the right details, then cancel the policy once you’ve paid them for it. The scammers then pocket the refund, leaving you uninsured with no knowledge that you’re driving without cover.

Unfortunately, you’ll be in the same position as having no insurance policy at all, which is legal requirement in the UK.

It can be a big mistake that comes back to haunt you as you could face penalties such as a £300 fine, six penalty points or your car being seized.

In addition to losing out on a policy you thought was valid, you’ll also need to take out valid car insurance so you’re covered to drive in the future.

What’s more, if you’re involved in an accident that’s your fault under a ghost broking policy, you won’t have any cover. So you’ll need to pay for any damages, including compensation for injuries or medical treatment.


Look out for signs of ghost broking…

  • Be wary of premiums that are much cheaper compared to policies from well-known providers.
  • Think about how the broker’s contacting you - genuine brokers don’t use things like WhatsApp or direct messaging.
  • Ask yourself if the seller has a legitimate website and UK landline number.

Don’t forget to do your checks...

  • Look up the insurer’s number for yourself, call and ask them about your policy to check if it’s valid.
  • Check if the broker is registered with the British Insurance Brokers’ Association or if the insurance provider is a member of the Motor Insurers’ Bureau.
  • See if your car’s insured by checking the Motor Insurance Database but always get in touch with the insurer if you think your policy might not be genuine as it could have been set up using fake details.

The best way to avoid being scammed is to buy insurance yourself from a well-known car insurance provider such as Allianz.

Some providers may offer you specific learner driver insurance if you have a provisional driving licence, but most require you to be added to a family member’s policy.

If you’re driving your instructor’s car, generally, your insurance should be taken care of when you book formal lessons. Your cover is usually built into the price of each session but it’s worth double-checking this.


These tips can help you keep costs down:

Keep your car secure

If you can, park your car in a locked garage or secure driveway rather than on the road. Fitting trackers and an alarm may also help to reduce your premium.

Make sure your policy reflects your yearly mileage

Limiting your annual mileage can help save you money on your insurance, especially if your car is going to be a second vehicle used occasionally.

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