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Although stories about unsuccessful fraud attempts and inept would-be scam artists often are amusing, insurance fraud is a serious crime that costs consumers a lot of money, according to the Progressive group of insurance companies.

“People think of insurance fraud as a victimless crime when, in fact, honest policyholders end up being victimized,” said Ray Albertini, Progressive’s national director of special investigations. “Most insurance companies base their rates on the cost of doing business. When costs go up because of fraudulent claims, other customers end up paying the price.”

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