METLIFE AUTO & HOME ENHANCES CLAIM SERVICE WITH IDENTITY THEFT PREVENTION
Warwick, RI, February 05, 2008
MetLife Auto & Home, the first national insurer to offer Identity Theft Resolution Service at no additional premium on all auto and homeowners policies, has announced that it is enhancing its claim service for all water, fire, and burglary claims reported by homeowners customers, by offering services designed to help keep customers’ personal information secure. Effective immediately, as part of the initial handling of a claim, claim adjusters will refer insureds to a service provider for proactive assistance, to help protect against data breach in the event of a burglary, and also to assist with the replacement of important personal documentation in the event of a water or fire loss.
Under the new procedure, a personal identity theft representative will be assigned to any claim involving a burglary or theft, or a loss involving fire or water damage. During the initial conversations with the customer, the MetLife Auto & Home claim representative will provide impacted customers with the opportunity to secure one-on-one service from the representative for up to a year after the loss occurs. For theft and burglary losses, this assistance will include placing fraud alerts on customer’s credit reports, as well as providing Identity Theft Resolution Service in the event that an identity breach occurs. In the event of a fire or water loss, the representative will also assist the customer in replacing whatever critical personal information may have been ruined or destroyed, helping a customer to recapture such important items as social security numbers, birth certificates, and driver’s licenses, among others.
“These days, it’s not just expensive electronic items or jewelry that thieves are after—it could also be your personal documentation,” said Tim Bowen, director of homeowners claims at MetLife Auto & Home. “In some ways, stealing the information found in tax records, bank statements, and credit cards is of even greater value to a thief, because that can turn a one-time break-in into an ongoing series of thefts, all involving an individual’s good name. At MetLife Auto & Home, we’re proud that we’re the first national insurer to offer our customers a way to avoid an identity breach from occurring in the event of a loss.”
The Identity Theft Resolution Service feature has been a popular enhancement for MetLife Auto & Home since it became the first national insurer to offer the service to its automobile, renters, condominium, and standard homeowners customers, in states where approved. The service is now available to its auto customers in 48 states, plus the District of Columbia. Unlike “ID theft insurance” coverage, which typically focuses on reimbursement of actual monetary losses arising from an ID theft, and is often sold for $35 - $45 or more, annually, MetLife Auto & Home’s resolution service focuses on helping customers regain their identities, and comes at no additional cost to the consumer.
“According to a recent survey conducted by Zogby International, people are actually more worried about being victims of identity theft than having their cars stolen,” said Bill Moore, president of MetLife Auto & Home. “We often hear stories from customers who have been victimized by identity fraud, who appreciate that we were there to simplify the process, and help put their lives back in order—just as we do when they are victimized by reckless drivers or fire.”
The actual services for Identity Theft Resolution Service are performed by MetLife Auto & Home’s agent, IdentityTheft 911™, one of the nation’s foremost providers of identity-theft crisis resolution and education services. For additional information about the Identity Theft Resolution Service program that MetLife Auto & Home provides, visit www.metlifeidentity.com.
MetLife Auto & Home is one of the nation’s leading personal lines property and casualty insurance companies. MetLife Auto & Home is a subsidiary of MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), a leading provider of insurance and financial services with operations throughout the U.S. and the Latin America, Europe, and Asian Pacific regions. For more information, please visit www.metlife.com.