Motorists warned as 'crash for cash' insurance scams hit record high - Is your area at risk?

Motorists warned as 'crash for cash' insurance scams hit record high - Is your area at risk?

WATCH: Discussion about expensive car insurance prices

Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 23/05/2024

- 13:41

London named as the top area for fraud insurance scams

The number of motorbike scams involving purposeful “crash for cash" claims has increased by 60-fold as criminals try to exploit the insurance market.

Crash for cash scammers deliberately cause an accident on the road and blame the offending driver in a bid to make a false insurance claim and make money.

The fraud can involve motorbikes and scooters attempting to purposefully injure themselves by jumping in front of cars or crashing into them.

Fraudsters have been known to target drivers as they park, riding past just as the driver opens the car door so that it hits the motorbike to falsely claim the car owners were at fault.

Do you have a story you'd like to share? Get in touch by

Car crash

Crash for cash schemes have jumped 60-fold


Recent research found that four in 10 of these accidents happen during the school run and rush hour, typically between 3pm and 7pm.

Lunchtime scams are also a popular time frame with 27 per cent of collisions happening between 11am and 2pm, with a further 27 per cent taking place on a Wednesday.

Matt Crabtree, head of financial crime intelligence and investigation strategy at Allianz personal lines business, said: “Organised criminal gangs have evolved their tactics, as well as targeting large cities which they’ve previously done.

“We’re also seeing them move around and use small clusters across wider areas to try and avoid detection.”

The data found that scammers were the most active in London with over half of incidents taking place in the capital.

South London saw the majority of the incidents accounting for 42 per cent of fraud cases, while North London made up 26 per cent.

Croydon was named the biggest insurance fraud hotspot in London accounting for 42 per cent, alongside Enfield in North London and certain locations in Southwest London.

Crabtree added that innocent victims are being “physically and emotionally” affected by this dangerous crime.

He warned that the fraud cases also put young children, drivers, and passers-by at “significant” risk.

Jon Radford, head of intelligence, investigations and data services at the Insurance Fraud Bureau, explained that crash for cash scams were being seen across all corners of the UK.

He stated: “We're collaborating closely with insurers and the police to help bring these reckless insurance fraudsters to justice.

“If anyone believes they have evidence of a crash for cash scam they can report it to our confidential CheatLine.”


Busy motorway

London was named as the top hotspot for fraudulent crime


The top 15 "crash for cash" scam hotspots

1. Central London

2. Birmingham

3. Manchester

4. Bristol

5. Bradford

6. Glasgow

7. Sutton

8. Enfield

9. Leeds

10. Slough

11. Rochdale

12. Coventry

13. Croydon

14. Ross-on-Wye

15. Shrewsbury

You may like