UK drivers are often caught texting or making calls while driving on the roads leading to risky situations and accidents. However, this practice is going to fetch them much higher premiums as the insurers can now keep a check on them. With the telematics car insurance, insurers can keep a watch on the driver through their mobile phones.

telematics car insurance

The device tracks whether the person is using mobile phone or hands free device and informs the insurer. In return, the insurer raises the premiums of the driver or withdraws the policy in extreme cases. Telematics tracks the driver either through mobile phones or black boxes. It informs the insurer about the driving pattern like braking, acceleration and cornering. As the app runs in the background of the phone, the insurer gets a detailed report of every function used in the phone. It could be anything from making calls to using maps.

According to data from the AA, it was found that drivers could actually face a 28% hike in premiums if they are found using phones while driving. Some of the companies do not offer policies to the drivers with a history of using phones while driving. While this is an advantage for the insurer, it does intrude in the privacy of the policyholders. Wunelli, the provider of telematics technology confirms that a lot more can be monitored through the mobile phones.

Simon Morrissey, head of data and privacy at law firm Lewis Silkin, talked about the intrusion of privacy by saying that “That type of ‘cross-pollination of information’, where one app knows what you’re doing on other apps, creates a privacy issue. In my view, if they know that you’re using your phone while driving, that is intrusive.”

Telematics expert are pledging to develop technology that overcomes such issues and makes the monitoring more concise. Debarring these drawbacks, telematics is still a popular name in motor insurance and the popularity is growing by leaps and bounds. There has been a 23% increase in the number of people choosing telematics or black box insurance totaling the number to 561,500 drivers as of now. While a quarter of these drivers choose to be tracked through mobiles, the rest allow the black box method of estimating the driving behavior.

Therefore, if you are using telematics then better keep your hands off the phone at least while driving. To make matters worse, the government is planning to increase the penalty to two hundred pounds for all those caught using phones while driving. So, better beware and start practicing good driving habits.

Author's Bio: 

Brijesh B. is a personal finance mentor working at UK’s leading price comparison website He suggests all UK motorists to compare car insurance quotes before renewal the cover from existing provider. To cover the smaller damage, he recommends a cosmetic car insurance cover so one can protect no-claim discount on next premium.