"de-anonymizing the web..."

Regarding the “de-anonymizing” the web, two years ago in Paris, I met a mathematician working on pattern detection models. He focused on locating individuals simply through their cell phones habits. Even if the person buys a cell phone with a fake ID and uses it with great care, based on past behavior, his/her real ID will be recovered in a matter of weeks. (As for Facebook, it recently launched a snitching program aimed at getting rid of pseudonyms — cool.)

Click through to mondaynote.com and read the entire post. Very interesting thought piece and probably not far off the mark.

Predictive Modeling for Premium Audit

Carriers can use a premium audit model to prioritize audits most likely to require a large premium adjustment and concentrate audit resources on those accounts first. Prioritizing audits will result in addressing those discrepancies faster. Even moving average receivables forward 30 days can be worth millions of dollars to the bottom line of a carrier with a sizable audit base. Additionally, using these premium discrepancy predictions proactively at the underwriting stage of the process can result in better underwriting decisions and increased customer retention, since there will be fewer end-of-policy cash-flow surprises for the customer and agent.
via iso.com


Novarica: Carriers Replace For Growth, Not Efficiency by Insurance & Technology

The reports also found that insurers' core system initiatives more often depend on internal resources for testing and conversion, while relying on vendor resources more heavily during deployment; that most projects take from one to three years, but that some have been completed in as little as six months; and that software license fees average less than 10 percent of the total cost of life/annuity/health projects but closer to a quarter of costs for P&C projects.

Chubb, the High-End Insurer, Looks Like a Bargain Play - WSJ.com

Chubb has one of the best brand names in the property- and-casualty insurance industry. Its Masterpiece homeowners coverage is the top choice of wealthy Americans to protect their houses.

The well-managed insurer, based in Warren, N.J., also has a conservative underwriting and investment approach that enabled it to weather the 2008 financial crisis with little damage to its balance sheet.

Considering its consistent profitability and franchise value, Chubb (CB) looks attractive at its current price around $50. That's less than 1.1 times the company's estimated 2009 year-end book value of $46.50.

CNA Chief Motamed: What's Ahead for CNA, Economy, Industry

After 30 years at Chubb Corp, Thomas Motamed joined Chicago-based commercial lines insurer CNA Financial in January 2009 as chairman and CEO. In this edited interview with Insurance Journal’s Andrew Simpson, Motamed talks about his goals and changes at CNA, as well as the state of the economy and the financial and competitive environment facing the property/casualty insurance industry.  He also adds some advice for agents and brokers.

Tech Decisions: Aggressive IT Spending Predicted for P&C Carriers

In looking at the top drivers for technology spending, Furtado reported business growth was cited as the top driver by 66 percent of respondents. This was followed by both business process optimization and cost containment/expense reduction, each of which was cited by 56 percent of respondents.

“These drivers reflect the need to strengthen processes and stay competitive,” said Furtado

Insurance & Technology: Insurers Warm to Flexible Technology Architecture

Some choice quotes from the above named article...  You can find it here
O'Connell suggests. "Senior business executives are sitting down and asking questions about the architecture that this new platform will be built on and asking for assurances that three years down the road we will be able to reuse the platform and architectural components and be able to give them the flexibility they need," O'Connell says. "They really want to understand." 

The former Hartford Life CIO says that in the past the company found value in the flexibility granted by letting the company's various businesses go their own ways with regard to technology decisions. But even though flexibility may be more important than ever, he adds, as the businesses have matured scale and efficiency have become more important.

suggests Infosys' Mohan. "Technology modernization cannot be justified on the basis of technical merit alone," he says. "There has to be significant business upside for modernizing or re-architecting to be approved." 
Hartford P&C CTO Kim identifies four layers of enterprise IT that the committee considers: infrastructure, platforms, applications and business architecture. "The trick is understanding which of those layers is appropriate for different services. In some cases it's a shared platform, but the application might differ between life and P&C," he explains. "That's the art -- not science -- that we're grappling with right now."

@Chubbinsurance Considering Google Apps?

Insurance firm Chubb Corp. has not started to test either Google or Microsoft's hosted offerings (the latter also includes the coming Web version of Office 2010.) But group CIO Jim Knight says "the whole concept appeals to me."

"Eighty percent of our employees are using 10% of the functionality of Office," he said. "So I could seriously consider Google Apps for 80% of my users, with the other 20% getting the full Office."