Zurich Switzerland has committed itself to digital responsibility

Person using a smartphone to go online

Zurich Switzerland has committed itself to digital responsibility

The digital future is already here: we track our fitness with wristbands, shop online, work in digital networks and send money to each other via our smartphones. But what we often don't realize is that every digital activity also creates data streams.
Digitization is creating potential for new products in many sectors of the economy. The same is true for the world of insurance. The technology of the future will make it possible, for example, to develop personalized and risk-based insurance solutions or to take individual behavior into account when determining rates. However, these new opportunities come with new responsibility.

Group of experts creates white paper

With this in mind, an interdisciplinary group of experts has intensively analysed the topic of "Digital Responsibility and Solidarity in the Insurance Industry" and drawn up a white paper. The group included Nicole Bertsch, Data Protection Officer at Zurich Switzerland, and Pirmin Meyer, Head of Public Affairs at Zurich Switzerland. The project was initiated by the Sanitas Health Insurance Foundation. Alongside the representatives from the insurance world, experts from universities, associations, consumer and data protection organizations and think tanks were also involved.

The white paper's key findings include: The personal line models of the future must be based on fairness and risk equity; solidarity will continue to remain important. Integrity and transparency help to protect customers' privacy rights. This in turn enables them to make self-determined and autonomous decisions.

Catchword: fairness

The expert group defined 'fairness' to mean that consumers have a right to expect insurers to behave with integrity. In the context of personal lines, fairness is especially tied up with risk equity.

Catchword: autonomy

With regard to data-based services, 'autonomy' means that consumers can decide and act in a self-determined manner. To do this, they must be presented with options and be competent to assess the differences between various offers. Options can relate to insurance products or services as well as distribution and communication channels. 

Catchword: transparency

Customers should receive easy-to-understand information about the extent to which insurance companies might store, use or pass on their data. They should also be able to understand the extent to which their data is applied when decisions and recommendations are made, for example when taking out insurance or receiving insurance benefits.

Catchword: privacy protection

Digitization is creating previously unheard-of amounts of personal data; this data can include health data or behavioral data such as movement or driving behavior. 'Data security' means that this data is protected from manipulation, loss, unauthorized disclosure or public exposure. At the same time, the risk of cyber incidents has increased. This makes it all the more important for stakeholders to guarantee data security.

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