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How you identify yourself to others, the clothes you wear, the car you drive, where you live, work, and bank each says something and if you’re not careful, you could lose it all. According to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s (RCMP) Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC):

  • In 2008, there were 12,309 victims of identity fraud in Canada, with a total reported loss of about $9.7 billion; and
  • In 2012, there were 17,009 incidents and nearly $16 billion in losses.

It’s a problem that is showing no sign of decreasing any time soon so how do you protect yourself, and is insurance the answer. Since 1969, MBS Insurance Brokers Ltd. has and continues protecting you, your family and your business. It’s what we do in Edmonton and Northern Alberta, and part of that effort includes ensuring you have the information you need to make safe and smart decisions in all aspects of your life. It’s why we offer comprehensive insurance policies including home, auto & life insurance. We understand the importance of protecting your confidential information, and offer the following advice to help prevent identity theft. Additionally, if you contact us, we can work with you to find a homeowners insurance policy that covers your needs, this includes options that feature identity theft protection.

It is important to know what exactly is meant by identity theft and identity fraud. According to the RCMP: Identity theft refers to the preparatory stage of acquiring and collecting someone else’s personal information for criminal purposes. As of January 8, 2010, Senate Bill S-4 became law, making it illegal to possess another person’s identity information for criminal purposes. Identity fraud is the actual deceptive use of the identity information of another person (living or dead) in connection with various frauds (including for example personating another person and the misuse of debit card or credit card data).

How can this happen? Identity theft techniques can range from the unsophisticated, such as dumpster diving and mail theft, to more elaborate schemes. Technology, mainly the Internet, facilitates more elaborate schemes, such as skimming, phishing, and hacking as criminals gather profiles of potential victims. Computer spywares and viruses, designed to help thieves acquire personal information, are an emerging trend. Victims of identity theft or fraud can experience financial loss and difficulty obtaining credit or restoring their ‘good name’.

To protect against these methods, it’s important to keep all confidential information safe.

  • Any mail that contains personal information should be disposed of carefully.
  • Be sure that you are using a secure connection when providing personal information online.
  • Examine the card slots of any machines you are putting your credit cards into
  • Always be cautious if anyone is asking for your personal information online or over the phone.

A January 2015 CBC News report notes that it’s not easy to track how many Canadians currently have fraud insurance. The reported noted that while Canadian banks are pretty good at reimbursing you, the inconvenience and administrative costs of resolving fraud make added coverage a sensible option. While many insurance firms provide fraud coverage as a standalone product for a monthly premium, some companies also offer it as a rider on larger asset coverage, such as home or auto insurance, which is generally cheaper and basically gives you the same coverage.

The best way to protect yourself is to monitor your hard copy or on-line financial accounts frequently and to check your credit report regularly for any unusual activities. If you’re a victim of identity theft, tell your financial institutions, credit issuers, and local police of the theft as soon as you can.

To discuss if identity theft protection is part of your policy or if you need a separate rider, contact MBS Insurance Brokers Ltd. at 780-436-7880 today for a free personalized quote from our list of preferred insurance companies in Edmonton. We protect you every step of the way. For after-hours service, please use our emergency claim contact numbers.

How an Insurance Broker Saves You Time and Money

Do you know the benefits of an insurance broker?

Suppose you’re looking for the best insurance coverage at the best rates in Edmonton. In that case, you’ll first want to understand the benefits of an insurance broker and how they can help protect you in all sorts of different situations – whether it be saving you money, time or giving you simple peace of mind.

What Are the Benefits of an Insurance Broker?

Here are some of the many benefits of an insurance broker.

 

1. Saves Time

An insurance broker does all the work for you, so you don’t have to spend your valuable time shopping around for insurance. Instead, you simply provide your broker with information about your needs, and they shop the markets on your behalf.

 

2. Saves Money

Insurance brokers work with many different partners to find the best deals on the insurance that works for you. They take all your needs into account and make recommendations that are in your best interest. They have relationships with many insurance partners and can negotiate competitive rates and discounts, saving you money in the long run.

3. Expert Knowledge and Advice

An insurance broker provides you with the support and expertise you need to find coverage that suits your needs. They work with various products and services to find the coverage that best suits you. In addition, they can draw from an extensive knowledge base and experience to advise you on the best options. 

Insurance Brokers provide expert and unbiased advice. A wealth of knowledge about coverage and market rates combined with expert risk assessment ensures your possessions and business are adequately protected. Whether you are looking into auto insurance rates, tenant insurance, or home insurance rates, your insurance broker can help you every step of the way.

You can utilize their expertise to quickly identify your options and rely on their unbiased advice to help you make the best-informed decision for your situation.

 

4. Working For Your Best Interests

Since insurance brokers do not work with one particular company, they have nothing to gain from recommending a specific product. The insurance company also pays them a standard commission. Thus, there is no financial incentive to choose one insurer over another.

Insurance brokers have your best interests in mind. You can count on them to find you the best rate possible, which can give you the peace of mind you need. You can rest assured knowing that if you ever need to file a claim, one of our brokers will be there by your side to guide you every step of the way. They act as an advisor on insurance-related matters. They will shop the market for the best coverage and rates for you. Since fulfilling your needs is their only priority, they will provide independent, unbiased advice on the right coverage for your situation.

5. Privileged access and rates

Insurance Brokers have access to a wide selection of the best insurance companies in the country. These insurance companies are only accessible by Insurance Brokers. They do not deal with the public directly or with Direct Writers. Brokers enjoy long-standing relationships with these insurance companies. Still, they do not have an affiliation with any specific insurer, enabling brokers to provide you with a broader range of options at competitive rates.

 

6. Transparency

Insurance brokers must give full disclosure about their compensation and its effect on your insurance premium.  They are also required to declare any financial links with specific companies that may be a conflict of interest, enabling you to make the best-informed decision.

 

7. Risk and Advocacy Experience

Extensive experience dealing with different clients and claim situations equips insurance brokers with a broader perspective on how to reduce your risk. Also, in the event of a claim, you can count on your broker to act as your advocate with the insurance company and handle your claim fairly and promptly.

Speak to MBS Insurance in Edmonton about your Coverage

Reach out to MBS Insurance today to determine your home, auto, and commercial coverage options. Over the past 45 years, our experienced team of insurance brokers in Edmonton has earned the trust and loyalty of our clients by delivering superior products and services. We understand your needs and provide you with the best protection and rates.

There are many benefits of an insurance broker. We can help you understand the intricacies of your insurance plan while saving you money at the same time. We are a trusted insurance provider in Edmonton and provide personal and commercial insurance policies to people living in Alberta. We offer the best rates on recreational, auto, property, commercial, and group insurance policies. 

Contact us online for a free quote or by phone at 780-436-7880.

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This article was originally published on October 7, 2016, and updated for 2021.