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Young people will share data for cheaper premiums

London

THE majority of people between 18 and 34 would be willing to let insurance companies dig through their digital data from social media to health devices if it meant lowering their premiums, a survey shows.

In the younger group, 62 per cent said that they would be happy for insurers to use third-party data from the likes of Facebook, fitness apps and smart-home devices to lower prices, according to a survey of more than 8,000 consumers globally by Salesforce.com Inc's MuleSoft Inc. That drops to 44 per cent when the older generations are included.

As consumers share more of their personal data online, governments increased their scrutiny of how it is collected and used following the harvest of 61 millions Facebook users' accounts by UK firm Cambridge Analytica. The European Union's new privacy law, known as the General Data Protection Rules, took effect on May 25.

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Of the older generations, 45 per cent of 35- to 54-year-olds are happy to allow insurers broad access to their digital identity, while 27 per cent of those 55 and older would do so.

Insurers are investing millions improving their digital offerings amid growing competition from fintech startups. But that is a work in progress: 58 per cent of the survey's respondents said that the systems do not work seamlessly for them, with many citing difficulty filling out a form online. And 56 per cent said that they would switch their insurance provider if digital service is poor. BLOOMBERG