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Recent Focus Issues for The Center for Economic Justice

Insurers’ Use of Big Data

Addressing Big Data includes needed consumer protections, regulatory tools and resources, and regulatory innovation developing to address how Big Data is transforming the insurance industry. In 2015, CEJ Executive Director Birny Birnbaum participated in a panel of experts on cybersecurity as part of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) International Insurance Forum.

We’ve also been working in partnership with Consumer Federation of America to reveal how auto insurers’ use of risk classification is highly correlated with socioeconomic status, including credit scoring, education, and occupation—and how Big Data creates greater opportunity for use of proxies for prohibited factors. CEJ has also been working with the NAIC Auto Insurance Working Group to push for meaningful and substantive analysis of auto insurance affordability and availability.

As part of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS), CEJ has pushed for greater consumer participation and for the IAIS to develop best practices and tools for supervisors to monitor markets and consumer outcomes in an era of Big Data.

Travel Insurance

CEJ has been active in the development of National Association of Insurance Commissioners Travel Insurance Model Law since 2017, pushing for greater regulatory oversight and better public information for consumers.

Press Highlights

The Center for Economic Justice has been featured in a wide variety of print, digital, and multimedia outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Time Magazine, National Underwriter and many others.

New York Issues Final Best-Interest Regulation for Annuity Life Insurance Sales, Mark Shoeff, Investment News, July 2018

‘A Way of Monetizing Poor People’: How Private Equity Firms Make Money Offering Loans to Cash-Strapped Americans, Peter Whorisky, The Washington Post, July 2018

State Regulator Group Keeps Life Out of Sales Standards Project, Allison Bell, Think Advisor, August 2018

No Easy Fight: Group Wants Title Insurance Biz Opened to Competition, James Drew, Houston Chronicle, February 2017

The Risks of Selling Your Personal Data, Kara Brandeisky, Time Money Magazine, July 2016

CEJ Executive Director Birny Birnbaum testimony  before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on House & Insurance at a hearing on legislation to create a private flood insurance market beyond the National Flood Insurance Project (NFIP), C-Span [38:08], January 2016

CEJ Executive Director Birny Birnbaum testimony at National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) International Insurance Forum Cybersecurity Panel [21:00], May 2015

Data Mining is Now Used to Set Insurance Rates; Critics Call Foul, Herb Weisbaum, WNBC New York, April 2014

Health Insurance Actuaries in the Hot Seat on “Rate Shock,” Jay Hancock, Kaiser Health News, April 2013

Saving on Title Insurance, Lisa Prevost, New York Times, March 2013

Consumer Groups Protest Life Insurers’ Plan to Lower Reserves, Kathy Kristof, Los Angeles Times, January 2009

Damage Exceeds Flood Map Boundaries, Carrie Teegardin, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, September 2009

Groups Oppose Easing Insurance Insurer-Reserve Rules, M.P. McQueen, Wall Street Journal, December 2008

Insurance Credit Scoring: 21st Century Redlining and the End of Insurance, Birny Birnbaum, Insurance Journal, August 2007

Truth on Credit Scoring Will Set Consumers Free, Birny Birnbaum, National Underwriter, March 2005

Driven to Choose, Julie Tripp, The Oregonian, April 2005

Iowa Cuts Added Costs in Title Insurance Policies, Joseph B. Treaster, New York Times, July 2005

Sales Tax Break Advances, Pamela Yip and Katherine Goodloe, Dallas Morning News, October 2004

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