Hello Dave.” In 1968, director Stanley Kubrick introduced the world to an interac- tive, albeit maniacal, talking computer named HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Fast forward to 2013, and not only do such
computers generally exist, they are now prevalent
in everyday items, including in the iPhone. With
“Hello, Siri,” science fiction has become reality.
Looking through the wormhole, and taking
the temperature of industry insiders, The Internet of Things is poised to become the next big
universal technological advance.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is communication among your things and/or by your things
to other machines, devices and data centers.
The technology, which has already been implemented in a number of industries, uses communication platforms such as Wi-Fi, tracking
tags, chips, bar codes and radio frequency to
effectively give a voice to everything, thereby
animating the inanimate.
The need for the Io T is simple: The number of
devices connected to the Internet already exceeds
the number of people on earth. In fact, by the
year 2020, there will be an estimated 30 billion
things connected to the Internet.
IoT is efficient. It reduces Internet traffic by
creating smaller interactive ecosystems of just
your personal things.
Manufacturers already have begun incorporat-
ing communication devices into their products,
thereby linking typical household items such as
HVAC units, appliances, alarm systems and util-
ity meters to the Io T.
It is these newly created “smart” links that impact subrogation, causing broad repercussions.
Here are four examples:
Water Line Animation
Imagine a typical loss scenario where a water supply line fails behind a toilet and nobody is home.
A minor leak then floods the residence and causes
thousands, if not millions, of dollars in damage.
However, some alarm companies already have
implemented water control and leak detection
packages, which promise to detect leaks as they
occur and enable homeowners to shut off the water main from their smartphones. These systems
animate waterlines and let them interface with
alarm systems, alarm monitoring stations and
Water line animation appears to be an ideal
risk management tool, likely reducing the
extent of water damage claims. However,
what if the leak detection system, remote shut off or even the insured’s
smartphone fails? Welcome to
a new breed of subrogation
defendants: hardware and
and even smartphone
Science Fiction as Reality:
The Internet of Things and Its
Impact on Subrogation
As the IoT grows, subrogation professionals
expand their evaluations to non-traditional
entities such as the cloud, data analysts and
hardware and software programmers
By Howard D. Maycon, Esq.