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AllState to provide “Driver Safety Ratings” for auto customers through insurance telematics data

Published: November 05, 2015 | Northbrook, IL

Allstate Insurance Co. is drawing up plans for driver safety ratings based on data transmitted from customers’ vehicles.

According to patent applications recently filed with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, Allstate’s scoring system would take into account speed laws, road signs, traffic signals, weather and possibly even biometric data such as your heart rate. The driver safety ratings would be used to determine what kind of car insurance you can buy and how much you’ll pay.

Allstate’s plans are part of a wider effort in the industry to gather “telematics” data collected by today’s advanced vehicles, smartphones and other devices. Insurers say they want to use such data to price policies more precisely.

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Allstate, the nation’s third-largest insurer, declined to comment on details of its patent but said it “is committed to shaping the future of insurance to add more value and best serve customers’ changing needs.”

Concerning the data that would be compiled, the company statement to NerdWallet added that “Allstate treats this information confidentially, enabling customer control over the distribution of their personal information.”

Allstate’s proposed system for rating drivers could incorporate more than just data from the car. For example, the insurer is considering monitoring and evaluating your heart rate, electrocardiograph signals and blood pressure through your hands from sensors embedded in the steering wheel.

According to another patent filed in 2014, Allstate is also working on a game-like system in which groups of drivers would encourage one another to drive better to improve the overall driving score of the group. Allstate calls it “geotribing.”

Real-time driving scores could be monitored remotely by all members of the group. Allstate’s hope is that this “creates a self-policing atmosphere.”

Allstate imagines a high school where the baseball team is competing with the basketball team to see which group can capture the best group driving score and then earn rewards.

Source: Nerd Wallet

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