Jan 23 2024

The Importance of Accurately Attributing Social Media Accounts When Investigating Insurance Claims

The first step in an investigation is also the most important, here's why.

When investigating insurance claims, the most important and first step is accurate attribution of social media accounts. It is paramount that before proceeding with an investigation, the correct individual has been identified. Misattribution of social media accounts can cause complications such as prolonged litigation, data protection issues, or simply wasted resources. This is why at NetWatch we’ve honed our method for accurate attribution over the past 10 years, to avoid costly mistakes for our clients.

Before instructing NetWatch to investigate a subject, an insurer will sometimes conduct their own enquiries to try to identify social media accounts or locate pertinent information. However, this can often be more complicated than anticipated, particularly when the individual in question has a common name or limited personal identification details are available. An insurer might think the information they need is just a Google search away but it’s all too easy to fall down a rabbit hole! One such example recently landed on my desk…

Prior to instructing NetWatch to investigate a claimant, the client had conducted their own prior social media searches on a “John Doe” in Manchester after they had been involved in a road traffic collision. Presuming that they had located the correct individual, social media posts were highlighted which showed them holidaying abroad and showing an interest in playing sports. The client believed that the correct individual had been identified due to the social media accounts listing the same name and location as the claimant. They were mistaken!

NetWatch is proficient in identifying individuals, and impartially and accurately attributing social media accounts to them; possessing the expertise and specialised tools (more on this later) required to minimise reputational risks for our clients which may arise from inaccurate attribution of social media accounts. The methods needed for social media attribution can vary case to case, and can include but are not limited to, links to email addresses or phone numbers, date of birth matches, links to cohabitants at addresses, directorship or employment matches and references to a specific incident.

Thanks to NetWatch’s diligent attribution process, I was able to identify the “John Doe” as an incorrect individual, tracing him to a different address than that of the real subject. I was subsequently able to locate and attribute a plethora of social media accounts belonging to the correct individual due to a date of birth match, as well as links to individuals who reside at the subject’s address, through methods which clients may not have the time or resources to replicate.

The above case is just one example demonstrating the importance of using proper method when performing OSINT and social media checks. You can trust that here at NetWatch we’ll always locate the correct individual! But what if you still want to do some investigating yourself? Well in that case we have that covered as well. We’re currently offering a 2-week free trial for our tool, Profile Finder+. Originally developed for our in-house team of analysts, Profile Finder+ is used by us to locate thousands of profiles a month for our clients. Access the same databases our experts use; hundreds of millions of profiles, emails, classified listings, leaked datasets and more, all available from one search bar.

Follow the link to find out more: https://www.netwatchglobal.com/find-profiles-like-an-osint-expert/

…and remember to accurately attribute those profiles!


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