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National fraud initiative

We are required by law to protect the public funds we administer. To do this, we might share information provided to us with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds.

We participate in the Cabinet Office’s national fraud initiative – a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Cabinet Office for each exercise.

The data matching exercises involve comparing sets of digital records, usually personal information, to see how far they match.

Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found, it could indicate an inconsistency that requires further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out.

The Cabinet Office has statutory authority to use the data in data matching exercises, under Part 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned, under the Data Protection Act 1998. However, it is subject to a code of practice.

Read the Cabinet Office’s national fraud initiative privacy notice to find out more.