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Forking out for mobile phone insurance could be a waste of money according to industry group BIBA.

It's warned consumers that the small print on some policies means that insurers won't pay out even if phones are nicked.

It also points out that with premiums of more than £100 a year, punters should consider pocketing the cash instead. Especially since standard handsets can be replaced for around £40.

Of course, should punters have really expensive top-of-the-range gadgets, then insuring them may well be the safe option.

Said Peter Staddon of the British Insurance Brokers' Association (BIBA): "The main reason for insuring a mobile phone is to cover replacement costs if the phone is lost or stolen and the potential cost of calls on the phone when it is lost or stolen.

"However many policies say that if the owner leaves their phone unattended in a public place and it is stolen or damaged then the provider can refuse replacement or payout.

Some 2,000 handsets are stolen each day. But since most handsets are relatively cheap, insuring them for the wrong reason "can be a waste of money", said Staddon. ®

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