What does it take to win one of Post Magazine’s much-coveted Insurance Fraud Awards? Ask Allianz – they just scooped the award for Insurer Fraud Investigation Team of the Year.

The award recognises a four-year investigation “Operation Genarch” which resulted in 33 people appearing in a Liverpool Court accused organising the UK’s biggest ever crash for cash scam, with 16 pleading guilty.

Allianz believe they saved themselves at least £1.2m by foiling the fraud. Its detection stems from an approach that encourages internal “market-intelligence” gathering on a broad front.

The original spark for Genarch (an obscure word meaning the head of a family, or more generally someone who rules by dint of age – bit like a gerontocrat, basically) came when a member of staff – somehow – noticed disproportionate number of motor claims in Merseyside back in 2005 when Liverpool won the Champions League (no connection implied).

Further investigations revealed certain similarities between the claims, and subsequently discrepancies between their details and the evidence. Working with police and solicitors, Allianz took the investigation on directly, rather than passing it on the Insurance Fraud Bureau.

Allianz claims director Graham Gibson said: “I am proud that we have received such a prestigious” (an obscure word meaning deceitful, full of tricks, not what it appears to be) “industry award and that Mihir Pandya and his team have been given the credit they richly deserve for their professionalism and commitment.”

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