Pay

Freedom of information request response - 05513

FOI request

FOI ID number
05513
Regarding
Counter Fraud
Request

We wish to understand the changes to the counter fraud capability that have taken place in Councils across the UK as a result of the establishment of the DWP’s SFIS.  Many Councils either lost or reduced their counter fraud capability as a result of SFIS, and whilst DCLG provided initial funding to help develop new and innovative methods of detecting fraud, that funding was for only two years and many Council fraud teams now have to be self-funding.

This FOI seeks to understand what Councils are currently doing to identify and tackle public sector fraud.

  1.  Does the Council have a Counter Fraud Team or persons in the Council responsible for investigating public sector fraud cases?
  2. If so, how many fraud investigators do you have?
  3. If not, are you part of a shared counter fraud service with another council or other organisation?  Please detail who.
  4. Did the Council’s benefits/counter fraud team transfer to SFIS when SFIS was established?
  5. Has the Council increased/decreased the number of fraud investigation officers within the last 24 months?  If so, by how many?
  6. How many fraud referrals or reports of fraud did the council receive in financial year 207/18?
  7. Please supply a notional value for fraud successfully stopped and/or prosecuted in 2017/18?
  8. Do you record fraud statistics?  If so, are they published? Where? Online?
  9. How do you record and manage your fraud cases?  Spreadsheet or software package?
  10. Do you use a fraud case management system?  If so, which one?
  11. How many referrals/cases did you receive from the NFI (National Fraud Initiative) in 2017/18?  How many led to a successful prosecution/outcome?
  12. Do you use reports from NAFN?  If so, how much did you spend on these in 2017/18?
  13. Do you use credit bureau reports/data/services?  If so, how much did you spend on these in 2017/18? 
  14. Do you have plans to increase your counter fraud capability/budget in 2018/19?

Our response

Response
  1. Does the Council have a Counter Fraud Team or persons in the Council responsible for investigating public sector fraud cases? No
  2. If so, how many fraud investigators do you have? N/A
  3. If not, are you part of a shared counter fraud service with another council or other organisation? Please detail who. No
  4. Did the Council’s benefits/counter fraud team transfer to SFIS when SFIS was established? Yes
  5. Has the Council increased/decreased the number of fraud investigation officers within the last 24 months? If so, by how many? Neither. The Council has had no dedicated fraud investigation officers since the SFIS transfer in July 2015
  6. How many fraud referrals or reports of fraud did the council receive in financial year 2017/18? 11
  7. Please supply a notional value for fraud successfully stopped and/or prosecuted in 2017/18? There was 1 Prosecution, weekly HB saved was £94.39 per week and CT was £17.55.  Amount for Recovery was HB £14,043.04 and CT £2,732.97
  8. Do you record fraud statistics? If so, are they published? Where? Online? Yes. Annual Fraud Report to Accounts & Governance Committee in September each year and Online as part of Transparency Code requirements
  9. How do you record and manage your fraud cases? Spreadsheet or software package? Spreadsheet & NFI App
  10. Do you use a fraud case management system? If so, which one? No
  11. How many referrals/cases did you receive from the NFI (National Fraud Initiative) in 2017/18? How many led to a successful prosecution/outcome? Referrals - 283+2,095=2,378, Successful Outcomes - 3+18=21
  12. Do you use reports from NAFN? If so, how much did you spend on these in 2017/18? No
  13. Do you use credit bureau reports/data/services? If so, how much did you spend on these in 2017/18? No
  14. Do you have plans to increase your counter fraud capability/budget in 2018/19? No
Response date
21 August 2018