is telematics spying on me?

is telematics spying on me?
in recent years there has been some bad press surrounding telematics. it seems fairly new, fairly odd - why would my insurance company want to track how i drive? what is it they want to know and, more importantly will i get into trouble for driving badly? will they snitch on me?

well, let's answer those questions in order - to keep premiums low, if you are a safe driver, no, and no. 

okay, that wasn't so informative. let us explain.

what do telematics do?

there are a few reasons telematics are being introduced. from an insurer perspective we use telematics to avoid tarring everyone with the same brush. it is all too easy for companies to sit back and say "you're young so you must drive badly, here's a hefty monthly bill" - all too easy. telematics means we don't do that. if you drive safely then you will be seen as driving safely rather than being seen as driving how every other 17-24 year old drives. this is beneficial to young drivers.

if you drive dangerously, on the other hand, then there is a chance your premium will go up. the reason for this is because we, as an insurer, take more of a risk insuring bad drivers. they are, statistically speaking, more likely to cause accidents and so we are more likely to have to pay out on an accident. it's that simple really.

in other words, if you drive safely it is a win-win and we pass the savings onto you rather than just assume you are a bad driver we back up our facts with telematics. see? police aren't called, bad drivers aren't reported, instead bad driving may affect your premium but that is all.

the other reason telematics are being adopted at the moment is because it is becoming the law that every car needs telematics by 2020. this doesn't mean every driver will need to have telematics insurance, but it does mean that every car will have a beacon. the reason for this is not for spying but due to safety.

we've all heard the stories - people who have car accidents but the emergency services aren't called until hours, even days, after the events. this isn't due to neglect but rather due to people just not noticing. either they have happened on seldom used country roads or out in the stixs. telematics looks to circumvent that possibility by directly informing the emergency services when an accident happens. that way the emergency services will know where the car is and can react in time to save lives. 

so, yes, telematics help you save money and they help keep you safe if the worst should happen. no, you aren't being spied on and no, you won't be snitched on. we hope that clears it up.