Everyone wants insurance. But barely anyone wants to be ‘sold’ one. This fact has exasperated insurance agents like crazy since the beginning of time.
I’ve been researching how to buy insurance in Malaysia for a while now. It started when I was in my early 20s, a good decade ago. And it’s time to compile everything I know *so far* in an article, for my own reference and yours.
Some notes before we start:
Insurance =/= takaful, but they serve more or less the same purpose – protection. I’ll just use the term insurance for the rest of this article, lazy la to type insurance/takaful
Yes non-Muslims can absolutely get takaful, and Muslims can get conventional insurance. No one will stop you (except the Gates of Heaven oop-)
There are many types of insurance, but in this article we’re specifically talking about the ones for humans, not property, car, travel or pets
I’m not an agent and my knowledge on insurance is limited, beyond what was shared to me from people in the financial industry. If anything below is wrong/inaccurate, please comment and I’ll edit
As part of an outreach campaign, members of the financial media – including personal finance bloggers like yours truly – were invited to the office of Life Insurance Association Malaysia and treated to a first-hand presentation of the latest update within the investment-linked products industry.
Even the CEO of Life Insurance Association of Malaysia (or LIAM for short), Mark O’Dell attended the meeting. He’s like the top boss in the insurance industry. His background is very, very impressive. Happy to report he was approachable in person.
Let me share with you how LIAM explains investment-linked products. It’s quite clever.
Investment-Linked Products, explained using Nasi Lemak
As I sat down with Rafiz Azuan Abdullah, the CEO of PIDM or Perbadanan Insurans Deposit Malaysia and asked my questions, it occurred to me that this man is truly at peace with doing a thankless job.
If you’re unfamiliar with what PIDM does, they are basically a government authority that provides protection for your deposits, as well as takaful and insurance benefits in the unlikely event a PIDM member institution fails.
For example, let’s say Bank X somehow goes bankrupt and you have RM10k saved there. As Bank X is a PIDM member bank, PIDM will make sure you get your RM10k back immediately.
You know how content from insurance/takaful companies all kind of say the same things? “Protect yourself and your family in case anything happens”, “Life is unexpected, be prepared”, “Make sure your loved ones are taken care of”?
Yeah, they’re repetitive. And boring. Important stuff, sure, but boring.
So when I got the opportunity to interview Great Eastern Takaful’s CEO, Shahrul Azlan Shahriman, I told them I wanted more meat if we proceed with a paid collaboration to promote their newest takaful product, i-Gr8 Harapan. I told them I don’t do pure ‘promotion’ without interesting content about their new takaful product and the takaful industry in general.
Surprisingly, this jual mahal approach paid off. They approved all of my questions. Here they are, for your reading pleasure.
When Perbadanan Insurans Deposit Malaysia – PIDM for short – contacted me about doing a paid collaboration, I was confused. Unlike other sponsored post inquiries I get, PIDM has no products or services to sell. If anything, their services are (1) free and (2) automatic.
Then they told me their reasons. They’re to:
Promote awareness on PIDM’s protection services so that people are assured that their deposits, takaful and insurance benefits are safe;
Inform which financial products are protected to prevent scams by unscrupulous parties, and;
Let people know what they should do IN CASE their banks, takaful and insurance companies go bankrupt (stay calm, see #3).
So apparently – and I didn’t know about this before – there are people out there who scam your family and friends because they don’t know about PIDM?? That is horrible! And this is why PIDM wants to tell the public who they are and what they do!
So I said yes, and together we created this plain-English article about what PIDM does.