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Coming soon: Google insurance

Coming soon: Google insurance

Google built a search engine. Then it built Web-based email. Eventually, it built a bunch of other stuff and it's almost finished with the world's first driverless car. Now, some major signs point to Google moving into the insurance industry.

Google has quietly been inserting itself into the U.K. insurance industry for a while now. Not as a seller, but Google's comparison tool has quietly encouraged drivers to compare U.K. auto insurance companies on its service.

That means that Google has been gathering two years' worth of data about customer tastes and opinions about insurance. The company also recently partnered with Compare.com, a specialized comparison shopping site for auto insurance.

Compare netted Google access to 30 insurers for its Google Compare tool.

Compare's tech and access mean that Google Compare will help shoppers find insurance. The question, however, is whether or not the company will offers its own car insurance options.

Ellen Carney, an insurance analyst for Forrester Research, pulled public records to look into Google's possible move.

She discovered that Google was licensed to sell insurance in more than half of the U.S. states. Not only that, but she also found that Google had gotten the OK from massive companies to sell them insurance, too.

Google refused The New York Times' request for comment. Whether Google jumps into the insurance game or not, I know one thing: Google is obsessed with data. So obsessed, in fact, that it might even take a page from one insurance company's book and force customers to wear health trackers.

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