How much are you willing to be tracked to save money?

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The soon-to-be released Apple Watch may single-handedly change the face of insurance claims a financial blog.

Some of the things the Apple Watch will track include your heart rate and other vital signs. It will count your steps, monitor your sleep, measure how much sunlight you get, and remind you about your weight… Everything the smartwatch will be able to do, in terms of monitoring your health, can be transmitted to insurance companies and provider servicing databases to better profile what kind of risk you pose to the insurance company.

If you want to save money on your health insurance, you’ll be able to do so – if you don’t mind sharing your personal metrics with your provider.

How much might you be able to save? In due course, a lot.

Insurance giants UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE: UNH), Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM), Cigna Corp. (NYSE: CIG), and Highmark Inc. are creating programs to integrate wearables into policy pricing and care dynamics.

Companies are encouraging their global employees to sign up for programs that use wearables to track the number of steps they take, how long they sit, and other activity measures to get them healthier so they can lower the cost of insurance they charge them through company-coverage policies.

We’ve all heard the stories about chips that can be inplanted that will monitor your vital statistics – like blood pressure, heart performance, and sugar levels, and then change your prescriptions accordingly. In the furture these devices may even administer the medication. Imagine that system being hacked.

Car Insurance is in the game too

According to, a popular AOL blog devoted to all things auto-related, “Progressive uses these devices as part of its Snapshot usage-based insurance program, which has been around since 2008. The dongle, which plugs into the OBD-II diagnostic port, collects data on how many miles are driven, what times of day a vehicle is in operation and how hard a driver brakes. In exchange for this driver data, prudent drivers can receive discounts as large as 30% off their premiums.”

Allstate Corp. offers its customers “Drivewise.” According to, an insurance comparison website, “Drivewise tracks your driving habits via a mobile app or a small device installed in your car and then sends the data to Allstate. You can look at the data collected on Allstate’s website, so you can analyze your own driving habits to look for problem areas and see how much you’re saving. Allstate says Drivewise will not increase your rates, and could help you save up to 30% on your premiums.”

Researchers at Florida-based Digital Bond Labs say they have uncovered major problems in a device that Progressive Insurance uses to measure the driving habits of participating customers. By reverse-engineering the dongle, they gained access to a network that allows control of critical vehicle functions, like steering, braking and throttle inputs.

Whenever information is being transmitted, there is a chance of hacking.

But beyond hacking concerns, how much are you willing to be tracked to save money?


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