Earlier this month, the ABI released a checklist on effective counter fraud practices. The checklist is designed to assist insurers in putting in place strong fraud defences. It is particularly aimed at smaller insurers with limited counter fraud functions.

This ABI publication follows a growing focus on combatting financial crime in recent years and the checklist notes that financial crime is one of the FCA's top seven risks. In its business plan in 2015/16 and 2016/17, the FCA confirmed its focus on this area with the latter plan particularly focusing on taking action against firms and individuals who perpetrate scams.

In February this year, the FCA joined the newly-formed government initiative, Joint Fraud Taskforce. The Taskforce is a collaborative body comprising banks, law enforcement, and government, to promote shared intelligence and endeavour to reduce the operation and impact of fraud upon the public and businesses alike.

The checklist sets out how firms can contribute to the insurance sector's fraud strategy on a joined up basis and makes the point that unless everyone is "pulling in the same direction, fraud will simply shift around the market and prevail".

We recently blogged on the Treasury Committee's inquiry into the impact of Solvency II which will, amongst other things, consider whether Solvency II puts the UK industry at a competitive disadvantage. Looking at the competition point from a positive angle, the ABI checklist stresses that meeting regulatory expectations and firms contributing to the insurance sector's counter fraud strategy can ensure that the UK remains an attractive place to do business.