Like it or not Pokémon is back in a big way. Pokémon Go, a mobile app which allows users to hunt for Pokémon in a user’s real life surroundings has become wildly popular. It has amassed more daily active users than Twitter in a matter of a few days after it launched. Pokémon Go users now spend more time each day on the app than every other app including Facebook; that is hard to comprehend, especially because of its young life so far.
Like other cultural phenomena, Pokémon Go has also spawned unintended consequences, such as injuries and property damage arising from distracted users; fortunately most of these are covered by insurance.
Even if you don’t know or don’t care what Pokémon Go is, you’ve probably already seen it in action. Hordes of players have been seen scouring neighbourhoods, slaves to their smartphone, zombie-like demeanor all in the hopes of “Catching ‘em all.” A positive take away of this is people that may not have incentive to venture outside and get some exercise are now forced to. The downside? Some of these “Pokemaster’s” are also walking, biking, or skating into signposts, buildings and even each other – not to mention even more serious incidents.
So even if your quest to be the very best like no one ever was leads you to chasing a Charizard into a hard fall, catch easy knowing you are covered by the right types of insurance, beginning with these coverages:
While you are out gallivanting the streets in search of those elusive Pokémon or training hard at your local Pokegym, rest assured that your possessions are covered if thieves break into your home. If someone takes off with your mobile phone, you’re in luck if you have gadget insurance, although your Pokémon may not be reimbursed.
If you accidentally cause damage while trespassing on someone’s property trying to catch that elusive Pidgeot, or someone injures themselves while playing in your home and decides to sue, most homeowner’s and renter’s policies have coverage for damage you cause to other properties as well as liability for mishaps on your property.
Although your Pokedex may be in good working order keeping track of all your Pokémon, you may also want to consider filling out MIG’s Home Inventory Checklist, which keeps track of your real possessions, which will make filing a claim easier in the unfortunate event that you have to.
Hit while running down that Onyx? He may be rock hard but you aren’t. With auto insurance being mandatory in Manitoba you can rest easy knowing you are covered but let’s not let it get there, pay attention to your surroundings and catch responsibly.
How much information are you willing to give up to play the latest game?
First, it is important to note that this game is not your average smartphone game. It uses a technology known as augmented reality, which is a blend of real life and technology. There are many layers to this game, and there are many other factors that come in to play to bring it all together, such as real time GPS tracking, geocaching technology and the world around the user.
Trojanized Versions of Pokémon Go
The app wasn’t rolled out across the world all at once; it was launched in different countries at different times. It was released in Canada days after the launch in the US. Some people couldn’t wait until the launch date in their respective countries and decided to download online. The problem with that is they may have downloaded a trojanized version which can not only damage your phone but access it remotely. If you downloaded it early it is highly recommended you uninstall it and download it again from the Google Play store or Apple App store.
As with other popular games, users scour the internet for cheats and hacks. Scammers have already capitalized on this; fake websites have popped up offering Pokecoins and other power-ups for the game in exchange for filling out surveys or visiting questionable websites. Surveys may seem harmless; however, they can collect a lot of personal information about you, which may be used in identity theft.
If it sounds too good to be true; it is. There is no “hack” to get Pokecoins except for buying them in the app.
If thieves do end up making off with your information, many insurers will cover identity theft, either as part of your homeowner’s or renter’s policy or as a stand alone policy. Identity theft insurance reimburses the insured for the cost of restoring their identity and repairing credit reports and other related expenses.
Check out these Pokémon Go hotspots: