How life insurers get your best-kept secrets

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By Barbara Marquand

Some of the things you might hide from friends are fair game to insurers when you apply for life insurance. And thanks to the streams of electronic data available today, life insurance companies can gather information on you faster than ever before. The prescription drugs you’ve taken, that DUI a few years back, a bankruptcy — all these pieces of information will likely come to light and affect your life insurance rates.

Life insurers are increasingly relying on big data resources to speed up the application process and reduce their costs to issue policies.

When you apply, insurers can buy data from a variety of sources. Here’s some of what’s available.

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