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Women Drivers Targeted in “Flash for Cash” Insurance Scam

Women drivers are being targeted in the latest criminal scam on Britain’s roads.

The insurance scam, which is costing insurance companies millions of pounds, works when criminals flash drivers waiting at junctions, apparently signalling them to pull out. When they do, the criminals deliberately crash into them and then accuse the other driver of pulling out without warning and causing the accident.

Criminals profit from fraudulent claims

Criminals profit by submitting wildly exaggerated and fraudulent claims to drivers’ insurance companies, claiming compensation for whiplash injuries, vehicle recovery, storage and repair costs, hire car expenses and even loss of earnings claims.

Gangs rely on it being almost impossible to prove that they flashed their headlights at the targeted driver. Even with a witness, criminals quote the Highway Code, which states that flashing your lights should only be taken as a warning to let other drivers know you are there, not as a signal to pull out, even though the gesture is commonly used exactly for that purpose.

Women drivers seen as vulnerable targets

The Asset Protection Unit, a company which helps police and the motor insurance industry investigate fraud, says the scam often targets vulnerable road users such as single women drivers with children in the car and older drivers. Women are expected to be less likely to argue in the face of an aggressive driver blaming them for the accident, and are often more concerned with the welfare of children in the car, who are likely to be upset.

Police hope that by raising awareness of the scam, they are less likely to fall into the criminal’s trap.