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New research reveals that 41% of home contents insurance policies aren’t tuned-in to digital downloads

11 February 2014

As sales of digital downloads of music, games, films and books continue to boom, new research* by Gocompare.com reveals that 41% of home insurance policies don’t provide any cover for lost digital downloads.

According to The Entertainment Retailer’s Association, the fastest growing entertainment categories in 2013 were mostly digital.  Last year, digital sales represented 54% of the games market and 48% of the music market.  This, coupled with the ever increasing capacity of smartphones, mp3 players and e-readers to hold data, suggests that some people are building up libraries of hundreds, if not thousands, of songs, films and books - but, what happens to all this digital data if you lose your device or if it is damaged beyond repair?

While home contents insurance policies generally provide cover against the theft or accidental damage of mobile phones, laptops and other devices, as either a standard feature or through a policy add-on, any pay-out may be limited to replacing the lost handset or device. A comparison of over 300 home insurance policies by Gocompare.com revealed that 41% don’t provide any cover for digital data.  Of those policies that do and where a specific limit is stated, there was a wide variation in the level of cover available ranging from £150 to £10,000, but typically most have a policy limit of £500 or £1,000.  

Ben Wilson, Gocompare.com’s home insurance spokesman, commented, “Because they don’t have a physical presence in the same way as a wall of DVDs, CDs, vinyl records or books, people may not have given any consideration to the value of their digital downloads.  But, if you buy a lot of digital data it may be worth checking your home insurance to see if your downloads are covered because the data you purchased may no longer be available and not all providers allow you to replace lost tracks for free.  And, remember, regardless if you are insured or not, it is sensible to make regular back-up copies of your digital assets.”

Gocompare.com is the only comparison site to provide additional policy information and product star ratings for home insurance from independent financial research company Defaqto; allowing customers to compare up to 30 key features for each policy.

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Notes to editors:

*Source: Defaqto Matrix of 313 home insurance policies (23/01/2014).