As rules and regulations expand within the insurance industry, document archiving and compliance face new and unique challenges that require systems with increased flexibility, strong security, and accurate accountability. Insurance companies are subject to governmental regulations that often vary from state-to-state, as well as the wide array of standards set by the industry itself. This year, far-reaching legislation in the health insurance and financial fields will have significant impact on companies’ internal and external operations adding to the need for more extensive and specific record-keeping. Existing policies for health care, property and casualty, and other types of insurance may have to be restructured to meet new direct mandates on insurers, as well as fulfilling the changing regulatory requirements of their clients’ businesses. Insurance companies can also expect new compliance rules created by new and existing governmental agencies seeking information and documentation.

Technology can help ease the burden of creating and storing information, however new technology poses several important compliance and archiving questions. For example, ten years ago, correspondence and internal memos related to a particular client account or specific broker were largely paper based and would have been stored together in a physical folder. However today, more communication is now conducted via electronic means. Should electronic communications be stored too? If so, how should they be stored, where should they be stored and how long should they be stored? Similarly, social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter are generating new issues, mostly in the sales and marketing area. Do you save comments left by sales representatives or customers? If an insurance broker makes an offer through Facebook, is an insurance agency accountable to deliver on it?

The fluidity of electronic communications and the number of devices that now support them also create new challenges for document security. Providing access to insurance databases or client records creates a potential security risk. The types of client information insurance companies keep can be extremely sensitive, yet in the wrong hands it can be transmitted around the world today in a matter of seconds.

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