Social Media and Insurance Fraud

by Michael Reeder on February 4, 2011

An interesting article from the Los Angeles Times:

Insurers Are Scouring Social Media for Evidence of Fraud

The article concerns the ways in which insurance companies are using FaceBook and other social media to detect fraud.  A case example is given of a women losing disability benefits for depression after posting photos of herself going to the beach.

This gets me rather angry actually.  Imagine being depressed and NOT going to the beach for fear of not looking depressed?  We all know how much more depressed clients are who isolate and don’t try.

I’m having visions of blogs all in black with sad faces and thunderstorm video links maintained by people who want to look depressed to maintain their benefits.

I’m also imagining idiot database engines denying me coverage and what-not based upon my buying patterns.  I buy books on every disorder imaginable, I must be really sick.

So is this a real problem?  Do we all have to rush out and scour our FaceBooks?  Or is the LA Times just finding a good fear angle to sell papers?

Or maybe insurance companies SHOULD do this if they intelligently investigate all angles?

— Michael

Blair February 8, 2011 at 8:59 am

What approaches to depression, outside the medical & therapeutic route can be taken? Vitamin D/Sunlight!! Surrounding ourselves with those we love, and those that care for us. Laughter. Living lightly. Etc.

All of which this woman seemed to be doing – just another yet example of how insurance companies are nothing but money hungry.

Michael Reeder February 8, 2011 at 3:53 pm

Blair — I’m really hoping this is an isolated case. Maybe a trial balloon by the insurance company to see if they can get away with this sort of thing. May it fail. — Michael

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