Using "Big Data" in Insurance

Held on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, from 12:30-2:15pm. 


  • Andreas Spiegel (Swiss Re)

  • Paul Henninger (FTI Consulting)

  • Hamish Corner (Penningtons Manches)

  • Dr Markus Christen (UZH)



“Big Data” is ubiquitous in insurance these days: in pricing, marketing, claim validation/fraud detection, claim processing and settlement… and probably everywhere else.

Few doubt its benefits – particularly on the fraud and settlement side. If fake (or excessive) claims are weeded out, we can all hope for cheaper premiums and fairer treatment. And with the Internet of Things finding its way into everything from cars to smoke detectors, a revolution in insurance may be upon us.

But it is not all positive. As both the FCA and Fed have warned, “Big Data” may open the door to unintentional discrimination. It might penalise those who shop around (or choose not to). And, if customer segmentation is taken too far, it may undermine the mutualisation of risk that underpins the whole idea of insurance.

How firms use data has, therefore, serious implications – which means that we are delighted to have been able to put together a panel of senior practitioners to discuss the issues:

  • Andreas Spiegel is head of group sustainability risk at Swiss Re. He leads Swiss Re’s due diligence in areas of environmental and social risk.
  • Pul Henninger is a senior managing director in FTI Consulting’s data & analytics practice. He has expertise across financial services and insurance, particularly around customer analytics, financial crime and fraud prevention.
  • Hamish Corner is a partner in the IP, IT & commercial team at Penningtons Manches. His practice advises across data and digital media issues, including EU data privacy and data protection issues.
  • Dr Markus Christen is managing director of the Digital Society Initiative at the University of Zurich. He is leading a research programme on the societal, regulatory and ethical challenges of “Big Data” in insurance.

How “Big Data” can and should be used (and what consumers should be told about it) is a debate of significant importance. If you (or a colleague) would like to join the discussion, please call the office on 020 7621 1056 or email As usual, sandwiches, wine and soft drinks will be provided.