Help Clients Prevent Deceased Identity Theft
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Life as an advisor has been turned upside down by the pandemic. There are now behavioral finance and cyber security matters to manage as clients adapt and respond to this once-in-a-century occurrence.
Take life insurance. Once a sleepy corner of the industry, it has suddenly become a red-hot sector as the COVID-19 scare dramatically increased demand for this once staid product. Many life insurance companies have noted recent significant increases in the volumes of policies consumers are purchasing, and much of it online.
According to CNBC, people have been “panic buying” life insurance to protect themselves and their families. In fact, searches for “life insurance” on Google jumped 50% during the pandemic versus the same period one year prior. Often when someone makes a financial decision in panic-mode they take a shortcut on due diligence about whether the product they are buying is appropriate and how it fits into their overall financial situation and goals.
When it comes to estate planning, life insurance plays a strategic role in creating needed liquidity in the estate for tax, settlement, and charitable purposes. Thus, for advisors, an opportunity around estate planning discussions is relevant.
Another key challenge that the pandemic is creating is a focus on cyber security and identity theft. According to recent reports, credit card fraud and identity theft increased significantly during the pandemic. According to the Federal Trade Commission, credit card fraud, one of the fastest growing forms of ID theft, more than doubled from pre-pandemic levels, a dramatic comparison to a 27% increase the prior year.