Information technology is driving rapid changes in insurance underwriting across the property/casualty and life/annuity segments. But while most insurers are embracing more efficient underwriting processes, few are aggressively exploring the revolutionary possibilities that new data sources and analytical capabilities herald.

Over the past decade, insurers have dramatically improved their underwriting processes. Novarica's recent report on the growth of IT-enabled business capabilities in insurance, based on a survey of more than 70 insurer CIOs, shows the following changes in rates of deployment, from 2004 to 2011, of key underwriting technologies for at least one line of business:

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