Alberta General Level 1 GLQP

Alberta General Level 1 GLQP

As of January 01, 2020, all students must study current educational materials from an approved General Level 1 Educator in order to be certified as having met the prerequisites to write the Alberta General Insurance Level 1 Licensing Exam.  You can no longer challenge the Alberta General Level 1 Licensing Exam.

This new certification format is known as the Level 1 General Licensing Qualification Program (GLQP).

Why implement the General Licensing Qualification Program?

The intention of candidate certification in order to register and write the licensing exam is to ensure the competency of new entrants into the General Insurance field. Low pass-rates have been an ongoing subject of concern with educators and industry stakeholders.  A change in program approach is now being delivered to ensure consistent education delivery and to improve student success rates.

How do I prepare for the Alberta General Insurance Level 1 Licensing Exam and become certified with ILScorp?

The first step to starting your new career as an insurance professional in Alberta is to obtain a CIPR number. What is CIPR? CIPR is short for Canadian Insurance Participant Registry.

Once you register with CIPR online, you’ll receive a unique identifier called your CIPR # which can be used to identify you.  ILScorp needs your CIPR number in order to eventually certify you to write the Alberta Licensing Exam.

Get your CIPR number here: https://www.cipr.ca

Now you’re ready to enroll in the ILS Alberta Level 1 General Insurance Licensing

ILS Alberta Level 1 General Insurance Exam Preparation Program.

The ILScorp L1 Program has everything you need in one package to successfully pass your Alberta Level 1 General Insurance licensing exam, including your certification exam.

How the Alberta L1 Program Works and What’s Included

  • L1 General Insurance Licensing online course – 12 Chapters
  • L1 Textbook hardcopy – 12 Chapters
  • L1 Workbook hardcopy – over 650 quiz questions
  • L1 Workbook Answer Key
  • L1 Flashcards– over 300 exam type mobile questions
  • Alberta Auto Essentials online course
  • An Insurance Professional’s Regulatory Responsibilities online course – AIC council rules and code of conduct
  • Alberta online supplement – specific to Alberta insurance requirements
  • Accident and Sickness Review Course
  • Review Tests – 17 review tests including multiple choice answer options
  • L1 Alberta General & Adjuster Insurance Licensing Practice Exams
  • ILS Level 1 Certification Exam

 

More info on exam prep program

The program is broken down into 8 Modules.

When you first log in to your e-learning campus you will be presented with the Alberta Level 1 Terms and Conditions. If you agree with the terms and conditions you will then have access to the very first Module of the program, Module 1: Concepts and Characteristics of Insurance.

Each Module is broken into chapters with the end of chapter quizzes. At the end of each Module is a  Module final exam.

Once you successfully complete all review quizzes and pass the final Module Exam you will get access to Module Two. This pattern continues for each Module and once all 8 Modules are successfully completed you will have access to the online certification exam. Once you pass your certification exam, ILScorp will receive a notification that you have completed all course material and qualify to become certified.

ILScorp will then mark you as certified in the CIPR system. This is why you need a CIPR number, without it we cannot mark you as certified. As soon as ILScorp marks you as certified, you can immediately register for the licensing examination with the Alberta Insurance Council.

You will then be certified for 1 full year. If you do not write the Alberta Licensing Exam within the year, you will be required to purchase course material again and go through the certification process again.

If you do not complete all ILScorp course material and pass the ILScorp certification exam you will not be marked as certified and will not qualify to register for the Alberta Licensing Exam.

What if I do not have Certified status and I try to register for the Licensing Exam?

Students will not be able to register for a General Licensing Level 1 examination if they have not been certified by an approved educator.

Cyclists not required to be insured anywhere in the world

Cyclists not required to be insured anywhere in the world

The excerpted article is from the Cowichan Valley Citizen 

Insurance is available for bicyclists including for third party injury.

Shirley Hanson’s response, today, to my letter very interesting. I’d read the letter about the cyclist hitting a pedestrian with a mixture of sadness, sympathy, and anger. It’s another illustration of the need for cyclists AND cars to obey the laws. In this case, a cyclist was either riding illegally on a sidewalk or ignoring a crosswalk….and is guilty of leaving the scene! If the cyclist was not identified, the insurance issue is rather moot. Assuming the cyclist is at fault, they are responsible for the damages and should not be allowed to escape that.

Currently, 52 years after cyclists were guaranteed the right to the road by international law (Canada being one of over 150 countries signing on to that convention) I can find no country which mandates bicycle insurance; even in the Netherlands where 36 per cent of people identify bicycle as their primary commute. Insurance is available for bicyclists including for third party injury. Some home insurance policies cover that as well under their liability clauses.

Here’s a quote from a Toronto legal blog: “There is no right answer to whether or not bikes should be licensed and insured. One thing we can all agree on is that sharing the road and safety is important.”

If you think bicycle insurance should be mandatory, maybe advocate for starting at, say age 12 or 16? I don’t think the parent of a nine-year-old should have to buy it. I’m sure that the governments would study the death and injury stats and make a decision.

The injuries sustained by the unfortunate victim were not listed or reported and I extend my deepest sympathies. I’m very glad she wasn’t hit by a motor vehicle.

On the side, many cyclists who DO ride on sidewalks, probably do it from fear of some drivers who pass too closely and fail to Share the Road which is “the law”.

Peter Lake

North Cowichan

Canadian insurance company lost nearly US$1M in ransomware attack

The excerpted article was written by Ryan Flanagan CTVNews

TORONTO — Computers at a Canadian insurance company were disabled for more than one week due to a ransomware attack that resulted in a payout of nearly US$1 million.

The attack happened last October, but is only coming to light now as efforts to reclaim the ransom make their way through the British court system.

The U.K. court action is being led by a British insurance firm with which the Canadian company had a policy protecting it against suffering losses from cyberattacks.

Neither company is named publicly in the lawsuit the British company has filed against the unknown attackers. In a court decision made last month and published Jan. 17, Justice Simon Bryan ruled that hearings in the case would be held in private and that the involved insurance companies’ names would not be published, saying anything else would open the insurance companies up to retaliatory and copycat attacks while also potentially giving the hackers a chance to cover their tracks.

“Publicity would defeat the object of the hearing,” Bryan wrote.

COMPANY TURNED OVER US$950,000

According to Bryan’s written decision, the hacker or hackers somehow “managed to infiltrate and bypass the firewall of [the Canadian company].” From there, they encrypted files on the company’s servers and locked desktop computers. They also left a note.

“Hello [company name] your network was hacked and encrypted. No free decryption software is available on the web. Email us … to get the ransom amount. Keep our contact safe. Disclosure can lead to the impossibility of decryption. Please use your company name as the email subject,” the message read.

The Canadian company got in touch with its British insurer, which hired ransomware response specialists. The hacker told the specialists they were demanding US$1.2 million in Bitcoin, but eventually agreed to US$950,000 “as an exception.”

The specialists then transferred 109.25 Bitcoin – roughly equivalent to US$950,000 at the time – of the British company’s money to the specified account. Although they had been promised a quick response, nearly 16 hours elapsed before the hacker got in touch again, giving them a decryption program.

Even with the program, it took five days to run the program on each of the company’s 20 servers and five more to decrypt and unlock all 1,000 desktop computers.

Some of the Bitcoin was sold for other currency before specialists were able to locate it, but the bulk of the ransom – 96 Bitcoin – was traced to one specific account on one specific exchange.

The British company is suing the hacker as well as the owner of the account – it’s not certain if they’re the same person or not – as well as the Bitcoin exchange. The insurance firm is seeking a court order to force the exchange to reveal the identity of the account owner.

A RISING THREAT

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) described ransomware last September as “an increasingly common threat, targeting everyone from individuals and small businesses to large private enterprises and government organizations.”

There have been several high-profile cases in Canada in recent years, including an attack that paralyzed the Nunavut government’s computers for nearly two weeks last November.

Insurance companies are also known targets. One of the largest insurers in Oman was reportedly hit earlier this month. In Canada, Andrew Agencies Ltd. was targeted last fall but said it did not pay a ransom – implying that they are not the Canadian company at the centre of the British case.

The CAFC notes that there is no way to completely safeguard against these attacks, but says training employees to recognize cybersecurity threats, restricting access to computer administrative privileges and storing backup data offline can help protect an organization.

Source: CTV News

 

 

Manulife Canada CEO sees Apple and Netflix as competitors as insurance evolves

By Tara Deschamps

THE CANADIAN PRESS

TORONTO _ When Manulife Financial Corp.’s president and CEO of Canadian operations Michael Doughty thinks about his biggest competitors, a few names make the list that have nothing to do with insurance: Apple and Netflix.

“We no longer really think of ourselves as competing against other life insurance companies around the world,” said Doughty at the Canada 360 Economic Summit on Wednesday. “We’re really competing against other companies that are delivering the kind of customer experience that all customers want.”

The customer experience offered by streaming platform Netflix Inc. and consumer electronics brand Apple Inc. is constantly on Doughty’s mind as Manulife tries to win over customers while grappling with relative newcomers to the insurance space, including Toronto-based customizable benefits brand League, which is picking up attention and raising big money.

“These new services that are so slick and seamless and intuitive and they’re really designed with the customer experience in mind, is what people expect from everything that they do business with,” he said.

Doughty believes they can teach the industry a bit about how to tackle the  “massive” numbers of Canadians that have no life insurance and have forgone such protection because they are spending their money on things like Netflix subscriptions and iPhones.

An RBC Insurance survey of 1,001 Canadians between the ages of 25 and 50 revealed that 74 per cent of Canadians are kept awake at night, worrying about their financial situation. Despite being so concerned, the 2018 poll found few would give up daily  “luxuries” to pay for life insurance instead.

Of those that are willing to forfeit some of  “life’s little pleasures,” 35 per cent said they would sacrifice one dinner out a month, 34 per cent would forgo a trendy clothing item, 28 per cent would nix buying lunch at work one less time per week, 35 per cent would give up a bottle of wine or case of beer and only 25 per cent said they’d agree to ditch their daily coffee.

Such a scenario has presented a  “huge opportunity” for Manulife, but also highlighted how often a business like Doughty’s needs to engage with consumers.

To take advantage of that opportunity, Doughty says the company launched Manulife Vitality, a platform with smart watch and fitness tracker integration that allows consumers to receive prizes and discounts for doing things like going for a walk or getting a flu shot.

“In the past, you would buy life insurance… and then you would sort of like put it in a safe deposit box and hope that you never needed it and pay a premium every month,” Doughty said.

“Manulife Vitality turned all that on its head and said why don’t we engage with you so you actually live and a long and happy life because if we can encourage you to be active, have a nutritious diet, not smoke, see your doctor regularly, it is probably going to improve your longevity and that is good for us.”

Vitality has pushed consumers to interact with Manulife on average 23 times a month, a significant jump from the two times a year _ when they receive their annual statement and when they get a premium bill _ that they used to turn to the brand, says Doughty.

It’s also been an example of how he thinks businesses can “reinvent a traditional product to eliminate some of the barriers that have stopped it from being as popular as it should be.”

“This movement towards what is the customer is something that all industries are having to reinvent,” he says.

“You have to make sure you are reinventing every interaction, every process, from the consumer’s point of view.”

Companies in this story: (TSX:MFC)

Phone phishing scams now targeting Social Insurance Numbers

The excerpted article was written by BY DILSHAD BURMAN | City News 

From the now-infamous Canada Revenue Agency con to the repetitive offers for duct cleaning services, phone scams come in various forms and most of them seem to target your wallet directly, often asking for money via gift cards or bitcoin.

But a different version of the scam currently doing the rounds seems to be even more insidious, with the fraudsters aiming for a large cache of information rather than just cash – your Social Insurance Number (SIN).

The scam

One newcomer to Canada says she fell victim to a convincing con artist over the phone who had her so flustered, she had given up her SIN before even realizing she was being scammed.

“At the start of the call, there was a generic robotic voice supposedly from the Service Ontario Justice Department that told me my SIN has been flagged for two fraudulent charges and ignoring this could lead to legal ramifications and serious jail time,” says Ranj, a Canadian permanent resident who recently moved to Toronto in November, 2019.

Thereafter she was asked for a “case number” which she was never given. She was then asked to provide her SIN number to open her “case file.” Upon refusal, she was told to Google the number the caller was using to verify he was legitimate.

The number — 807-223-2348 — is connected to a web page for the Dryden Courthouse in Ontario under the Ministry of the Attorney General.

“He said that I would need to come in and appear at the Dryden Courthouse to fight my case against these claims associated with my SIN,” Ranj tells CityNews. “That’s when he asked me for my SIN again, which is when I gave it to him … you think you can trust this person (calling from the courthouse) and you can give them your SIN.”

Jeffrey Thomson, Senior RCMP Intelligence Analyst at the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre says the perpetrators of such scams often create the sense of urgency Ranj felt and it is part of their modus operandi.

“They’re trying to create a situation that puts Canadians in a position of alarm and fear and you get so excited that you just start following orders, especially if the caller is very authoritative,” says Thomson.

While Ranj is new to the country, Thomson says these scams do not necessarily target new Canadians.

“What happens with a scam is, when fraudsters are successful, they target everybody. The fraud will mutate and they’ll begin to target everybody. Anybody with a Canadian phone number is subject to get one of these calls,” he says.

By the end of the call, Ranj says she knew it was fake — the apparent charges against her involved money laundering, renting a car in Nunavut and drug related offences which she knew to be false.

“That’s when I said that this is bull*** because I’ve never been remotely associated with drugs,” she says, adding that it all sounded ludicrous, but by then it was too late.

“You feel stupid. I’m from a very big city in India – I’m from Mumbai – and you’re like ‘I’m never going to fall for that,’” she says. “But’s it’s all a matter of timing and what your mental state was at the time,” she explains, adding that they caught her at a busy time in the morning and while she never answers unknown numbers, she’s currently job hunting and was hoping to hear from potential employers.

As the caller’s threats escalated to freezing her bank accounts and other dire consequences, Ranj decided to hang up. Thereafter she called police who confirmed it was a scam call.

Const. Jennifer Sidhu tells CityNews that Toronto police is aware of phishing scams involving Social Insurance Numbers, but there are no active investigations at this time.

Police told Ranj that in order to file a complaint, she would have to show that her SIN had been used fraudulently. She was also advised to report the incident to Service Canada and hopefully be issued a new SIN.

Social Insurance Numbers are not fully replaceable

When she called Service Canada, Ranj was told a new SIN cannot be issued unless she can, again, somehow prove that hers was used fraudulently.

Getting a new SIN is fairly complicated and Service Canada simply does not issue them for those whose personal information may be compromised by scams or data breaches.

The reasons they list for this policy are:

  • A new SIN will not protect you from identity theft or fraud because it is not a fresh start and your old SIN remains active. If someone uses your old SIN and the business where it is used does not check the person’s identity, you may have to prove you were not involved in the fraud or even pay the fraudsters debt.
  • If you are issued a new SIN, the government can only share it with the federal departments and agencies that use it. That means you are responsible for providing your new SIN to all other institutions including your bank, creditors, pension providers, employers and any other organization you gave your SIN to. Not doing so might mean you miss payments or benefits owed to you plus it can leave room for subsequent fraud and identity theft.
  • Since a new SIN does not erase your old one, you then need to monitor both accounts and the credit reports for both SINs which is highly inconvenient and once again, increases the risk of fraud.

What fraudsters can do with your SIN

“The SIN is the last stand when it comes to your identity,” explains Mick Be, CEO of IAmI Authentications, Inc. “The government has issued you a SIN card – it’s everything they rely on in order to identify you among a population of Canadians.”

On the government level those nine digits are tied back to your name, date of birth, current and previous addresses and a large amount of other identity information.

From a financial perspective your tax information as well as your entire credit profile including your history and credit score and connected to your SIN.

“It’s your credit profile the fraudsters are after for financial gain,” says Thomson, adding that once they gain access to the information connected to your SIN, it can be used for anything from renting a car to taking out a bank loan in your name.

“If I have access to your name, your address and your SIN, that’s enough information for me to perhaps speak to somebody at the CRA. Somebody can gain then, your tax credits,” adds Be.

In short, anything that’s connected with your credit is available and therefore exploitable by fraudsters if they get their hands on your SIN and the information its tied to.

How to monitor SIN activity and fraud

Thomson says it is fairly simple to monitor your SIN activity and detect if something seems inconsistent.

“What we recommend for any Canadian is that you check your credit profile at least once a year,” he advises, adding that its a free service. All you have to do is call Canada’s two national credit bureaus — TransUnion or Equifax — or visit their website to get a copy of your credit profile.

Your profile contains all your accounts and all the activity tied to those accounts. Thomson says if you notice anything that stands out or something that you don’t recognize, call the credit bureaus and report fraud.

Service Canada adds another indication that your SIN has been used fraudulently is if you receive a Notice of Reassessment from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) about “undeclared earnings.” This likely means someone else has used your SIN for employment or to receive other taxable income.

Protection and next steps

Thomson says when it comes to fraud, it’s essential to “recognize, reject, report.”

  • Recognize that fraudsters are using the telephone, the internet, email, texts and any other available medium to reach out to Canadians and steal their money.
  • Reject the callers requests. When you get calls like this, take time to think about it and don’t be afraid to say “no” to the caller. Don’t react immediately but rather do your research, talk to friends and find out more about it. There is no need to follow the orders the caller is giving you.
  • Report the incident as soon as possible. If it is not reported, police cannot be alerted to such scams and they cannot provide warnings to the public to prevent fraud.

 

Toronto police adds that no government agency will ever ask for sensitive information over the phone. A scam call should be reported to police, Service Canada and both Equifax and TransUnion credit bureaus.

However, both police and Service Canada will only launch an investigation if you suspect and can show fraudulent activity on your account.

If you feel like someone else is actually using your SIN:

  • File a complaint with the police and be sure to ask for a case reference number and the officer’s name and telephone number.
  • Contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. It is jointly run by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Ontario Provincial Police and Competition Bureau Canada and they can guide you further.
  • Call Equifax and TransUnion and request a copy of your credit profile to review it for any suspicious activity. They can also flag your account for potential fraud if needed for a small fee.
  • Inform your bank and creditors on the phone and in writing.
  • If you find any irregularities in your snail mail, like opened envelopes or missing documents, inform Canada Post.

Once you’ve filed all the necessary reports and collected all the documents from various agencies proving fraud or misuse of your SIN, take them to a Service Canada centre in person along with an original ID, to file a report.

“It can happen to anyone, you’re not above and beyond it,” says Ranj. “You can be the smartest cookie, you can be as street smart as you can. But until it happens, you can’t be that cocky about it.”

Sources: Service Canada, Toronto Police, Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

The Co-operators and CSS Pension Plan reach longevity insurance deal

GUELPH, ON, Jan. 28, 2020 /CNW/ – The Co-operators and the Co-operative Superannuation Society (CSS) Pension Plan today announced a new longevity insurance agreement that will provide greater financial security to more than 6,300 CSS pensioners.

“CSS is very proud to have been providing an in-plan annuity option to our members for close to 50 years,” said Martin McInnis, Executive Director of CSS.  “Our agreement with Co-operators is a proactive and innovative approach that prudently protects our plan’s annuity offering against longevity risk and positions CSS to continue to meet the retirement income needs of our members well into the future.”

The CSS Pension Plan is a defined contribution plan that provides optional guaranteed lifetime retirement income. Under the new agreement, one of only three longevity deals announced in Canada, the CSS Pension Plan will transfer longevity risk for $660 million of pension plan liabilities to The Co-operators. In exchange for quarterly premium payments, The Co-operators will pay the actual pension benefit amounts to the plan on a quarterly basis and the CSS Plan will maintain full responsibility for monthly pension payments to pensioners.

“We’re thrilled to have partnered with the Co-operative Superannuation Society (CSS) to develop a customized solution for their longevity risk,” said Rob Wesseling, President and CEO, The Co-operators. “The Co-operators is well positioned to offer longevity solutions to the Canadian market, and we recognize this risk is a growing concern for Canadian retirees and pension plan providers throughout the country.”

As the successful applicant in a competitive bid process, The Co-operators negotiated the terms of the customized insurance contract with Aon plc who advised the CSS Pension Plan.  One of the unique features of the contract for a group of this size is the fact that it is expected to operate on a non-collateralized basis.

“I congratulate CSS on their foresight in considering the longevity risk faced by their members and taking action to address it. This agreement is a testimony to what can be achieved when there is a willingness to consider innovative solutions to improve member security” said William da Silva, Canadian national Director, Retirement Solutions at Aon.  Aon advised CSS throughout all aspects of this transaction—from strategy to ultimate placement of the longevity insurance.

About Aon
Aon plc (NYSE: AON) is a leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions. Our 50,000 colleagues in 120 countries empower results for clients by using proprietary data and analytics to deliver insights that reduce volatility and improve performance.

About The Co-operators:
The Co-operators Group Limited is a Canadian co-operative with more than $46.7 billion in assets under administration. Through its group of companies, it offers home, auto, life, group, travel, commercial and farm insurance, as well as investment products. The Co-operators is well known for its community involvement and its commitment to sustainability. The Co-operators is ranked as the Corporate Knights’ #1 Best 50 Corporate Citizen in Canada and listed among the Best Employers in Canada by Aon Hewitt. For more information, visit www.cooperators.ca.

About CSS Pension Plan:
The CSS Pension Plan provides competitive, value-added retirement products and services exclusively to co-operative and credit union employees. Pioneered in 1939, it is one of the oldest and largest defined contribution pension plans in Canada with over $4 billion in assets under administration. Today, it has grown to serve over 330 employers and 48,000 current and past co-operative and credit union employees across Canada. For more information, visit www.csspen.com.

SOURCE The Co-operators

Related Links

www.cooperators.ca

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