Royal Commission targets life insurance phone sales

The Royal Commission into the banking and finance sector has drawn its bow at problematic practices of some life insurance companies in selling life insurance policies by phone. Indigenous people living in remote communities, some as young as 20, have been targeted and signed up for policies they didn't necessarily want or need. 

ClearView Life Insurance has been implicated, after calls were listened to where customers were encouraged to provide bank details and personal information to enter them into a contract without them knowing. ASIC reviewed ClearView in February, finding the use of high pressure sales tactics of phone sales people.

Amongst 32,000 life insurance policies, 1166 were to people living in areas with a high indigenous population, where English as a first language is rare. ClearView has since stopped selling life insurance directly to consumers, and has refunded $1.5 million to thousands of customers. 

Other companies have also been found to have provided staff with incentives, like Vespas and other rewards, for sales.