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If your car is insured in the UK, you might not know what an insurance scanner is. But if you are not insured to drive in the UK, you might find out the hard way. The British government is extremely focused on preventing uninsured drivers from entering the roads. They have a large focus on catching and penalizing drivers who do not follow specific insurance guidelines. One of their primary lines of defense is a scanner.

In this article, we’re going to explore these insurance scanners and what it could mean for you if you end up near one. Make sure to read all this information if you’re unaware of the system currently being operated in the country.


ANPR stands for Automatic Number Plate Recognition. It’s a scanning technology used by police to automatically recognize number plates and compare them against databases. They’re used across the country to ensure that the police are aware of certain individuals who travel via vehicle. They can quickly identify problems or catch vehicles that are suspected of crime.

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These ANPR scanners are mounted on police vehicles, and operate in fixed locations throughout the country – they do not reveal the fixed locations to the public for obvious reasons.

Catching Uninsured Vehicles

As you can probably already tell, the system is designed perfectly to catch people who are driving without insurance. The number plate on your vehicle will be directly transferred to a database to check across the insurance information. If it shows up that it has not been insured, police will immediately know that you’re driving illegally.

In this regard, you don’t have to break the law in another way to be pulled over and stopped. You don’t have to be speeding, driving recklessly, or get in an accident to end up being caught out. With the large amount of these ANPR scanners in different locations, the chances are you will be caught relatively quickly if your car is completely uninsured.

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Other Uses

ANPR also has a range of other uses. The police also use it to detect other forms of criminal activity. For example, if a car has been used in a crime and is then detected by a scanner, the police can intercept the vehicle to ensure that it does not continue to facilitate crime. It is a very effective way at ensuring criminals are caught in a timely manner.


If you’re driving without a vehicle in the UK, you might want to reconsider your actions. The British government is extremely serious about catching offenders, they make it their mission to ensure that everyone on the road is insured. If you have been driving an uninsured vehicle, you’re already testing your luck. Countless drivers have been caught by this system, and it bears serious consequences.

If you want to learn more about the penalties for driving without insurance in the UK, we have a blog post that details all the potential consequences. We also have a range of other auto insurance related articles on our website.

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