Gabi has raised $9.5 million in a first institutional round of funding to make sure you get the best rates when it comes to car, homeowner’s, or renter’s insurance. The San Francisco company automates insurance shopping and provides more visibility into insurance rates, allowing people to compare all the major insurance companies’ rates and instantly get a quote. And it does so without forcing you to go to multiple web sites and fill out a bunch of forms. “We estimate roughly $50 billion are overpaid by insurance customers in the U.S. every year, and we’d like to put some of that money back into our customers’ pockets,” said Gabi CEO Hanno Fichtner, in a statement. “Instead of relying on insurance agents who may be biased or conduct incomplete research, Gabi’s technology automatically scours the 25 largest insurance companies in the US, including Allstate, Travelers, and Safeco, for the best rates and most … [Read more...] about Gabi raises another $9.5 million to disrupt consumer insurance markets
Million dollar insurance policy
With technology increasingly intertwined with all aspects of business, [email protected] can help you -- prosumers to small businesses with fewer than five employees -- get started.If you're starting a business or working for yourself, you might not think that you need business insurance -- but given today's risks, insurance is an area that every small business operator or sole proprietor should be concerned about.Just what are the risks and what types of insurance should you be considering?"The insurance that you need depends upon the type of business that you operate," said Mike Barton, president of US business insurance for Allstate Insurance. For example, a contract software developer who works on-site at her client's will have different risks than a day care center operator who runs a business out of her home, or the owner of a courier service that delivers 24/7 to locations throughout a large metro area."Regardless of the business that you're in, a general liability insurance policy is … [Read more...] about Never work without a net: Insuring your business
Lloyd's of London, one of world's largest insurance firms, has partnered with San Jose, California-based Counterpane Security, Inc. to offer insurance against business losses due to mischief by hackers.Counterpane said the insurance program will protect against the loss of revenues and information assets caused by Internet and e-commerce security breaches. The firm will offer one program for its clients, and another that its clients can offer to their own customers.Counterpane chief technology officer Bruce Schneier said, "This is not for your home user, this is for Yahoo!, this is for CDUniverse, which lost all those credit card numbers in January. It's threat avoidance. This, along with monitoring, is just another arrow in your quiver."Counterpane says its customers will have exclusive access to two previously unavailable insurance programs. The first program, Internet Access and Income Protection Coverage, is designed for Counterpane clients. The second, Internet Asset and Income … [Read more...] about Lloyd’s of London To Offer Hacker Insurance
Auto insurance companies are not your friends. No matter how friendly, funny, or protective they seem, insurance companies are out to make money, a lot of it. You supply that cash and competition for your dollar is high, which is why they sell themselves to you with cute little talking animals, reassuring father figures, and delightfully wacky ladies named Flo. But after you sign on the dotted line, your auto insurance company has every incentive to prove that you’re a risky driver and raise your rates before you ever file a claim.Now, thanks to the blossoming tech of in-car telematics, they’re aiming to monitor drivers more closely than ever before.A history of surveillanceInsurance companies routinely perform multivariate analysis based on a variety of personal factors including age, sex, marital status, education level, type of job, home location, credit score, annual mileage traveled, ticket and accident history, length of driving experience, and the type of … [Read more...] about Auto insurers desperately want your driving data, but should you give it to them?
Asurion, an insurer of consumer-electronics products, has started a new policy that will cover iPhones that are lost or stolen, or get damaged whether dropped on the ground or into a pitcher of beer. Cracked screens, a common iPhone mishap, will be replaced, even if the phone otherwise works.It’s the only insurance plan for the iPhone authorized by AT&T Inc., the exclusive wireless carrier in the United States for Apple Inc.’s popular smart phone.Replacing a phone can be costly. Although the iPhone 4 costs $199 or $299 with a two-year contract with AT&T, customers would need to pay the full retail price of $599 or $699 to replace a phone in the middle of the contract.Repairs aren’t cheap, either. Tekserve, an Apple retailer and repair shop in New York, charges $149 to replace a cracked screen and $99 for a broken microphone or charging port. (Apple didn’t responded to repeated inquiries on repair service charges at the company’s … [Read more...] about iPhone Insurance Available, But is it Worth it?
Despite being given a deadline of Sept. 30, 2007, to comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), many Level 1 merchants -- those that process more than 6 million transactions per year -- still do not meet the necessary requirements. In fact, Visa reports that as much as 40 percent of its Level 1 merchants fall into this category.While monthly fines for noncompliance -- ranging from US$5,000 to $25,000 -- may not seem too steep for these large merchants, there are far greater costs associated with noncompliance beyond these monetary fines levied by the PCI.It is critical for IT administrators and C-level executives to consider all of the costs associated with PCI compliance and noncompliance, especially given the looming Dec. 31, 2007, deadline for Level 2 merchants to demonstrate compliance. Some are palpable, of course, but others may not be as evident, and it is also important to understand the far-reaching benefits of compliance.Calculating the costs of … [Read more...] about EXPERT ADVICE Dollars and Sense: Calculating PCI Noncompliance Costs
Open Source Risk Management, the first and only vendor-neutral provider of open-source risk mitigation and coordinated legal defense services, recently certified the Linux kernel as free of source code that could provide a basis for meritorious copyright infringement claims. After a six-month process of examining the individual software files in the Linux kernel and tracing their origins, OSRM found no copyright infringement in Linux kernel versions 2.4 and 2.6. As a result, OSRM offers clients legal protection against copyright litigation for those versions of the kernel."We decided to go straight to the heart of the matter and evaluate whether we could defend the Linux kernel," said Daniel Egger, founder and chairman of OSRM. "We determined that we can; and we will. Our clients will receive legal protection equal to, if not beyond, what they receive with proprietary software licenses."Along with others in the open-source community, Egger believes lawsuits like SCO's are legally weak. … [Read more...] about EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW OSRM Chairman Daniel Egger on Open-Source Insurance
American companies need to take a stand against censorship on the Internet, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said on Thursday in a speech on Internet freedom delivered at the Newseum in Washington, D.C."Censorship should not be in any way accepted by any company from anywhere," Clinton said, "and in America, American companies need to make a principled stand. This needs to be part of our national brand."Taking such a stand is not only the right thing to do from an ethical standpoint, Clinton said, but also good for business. "Consumers worldwide will reward companies that follow those principles," she said. "Just as steel can be used to build hospitals or machine guns," Clinton explained, "modern information networks and the technologies they support can be harnessed for good or for ill. Technologies with the potential to open up access to government and promote transparency can also be hijacked by governments to crush dissent and deny human rights."The recent crisis between … [Read more...] about Google-China Skirmish Mushrooms Into Foreign Policy Brawl
CRM solutions have a long history of helping B2B marketers achieve greater ROI from their leads. Yet for companies that sell their products and services direct to consumers, CRM solutions frequently miss the mark. A quick Google search for CRM helps prove this: The search returns plenty of B2B products, but sifting through the results to find solutions designed specifically for the B2C sale is like finding a needle in a haystack.Why is this? To answer that question, it's first necessary to understand the unique differences between B2B and B2C sales. Of course, there are many formulas for sales and marketing success, but seven aspects that are common to both B2C and B2B sales effectively illustrate the differences between them:1. Speed of Sales Process -- A B2C sale is typically fast, usually weeks or months; a B2B sale is much slower, usually months or years.2. Number of Decision Makers -- There are usually one or two decision makers in a B2C sale; there may be a dozen or more involved … [Read more...] about EXPERT ADVICE B2B vs. B2C CRM: What’s the Diff?
They may not be the most thoughtful presents in the world, but they sure are convenient. Gift cards relieve shoppers of having to find the perfect size, style, and color of any item on a shopping list. They also avoid scenarios where what the buyer views as desirable is antithetical to the receiver's outlook.Consequently, consumers spend billions on these small plastic "gifts" each year. The Purdue Retail Institute estimated that U.S. consumers purchased approximately US$40 billion worth of gift cards just during the 2008 holiday season.However, the ongoing economic downturn has tarnished these shopping aids' name. Consumers have been saddled with millions of dollars in worthless gift cards as retailers large and small have filed for bankruptcy. With gloomy economic news on the horizon, the question becomes: What does the future hold for these convenient items?Consumers like the gift card option because it makes gift-giving simpler and more convenient. "Gift cards are often bought as … [Read more...] about Gift Cards in a Gloomy Economy: A Losing Bet?