Feeds

Councils get online arsenal to battle billion-pound bloodsuckers

All hands to repel freeloaders

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Local authorities will be able to use a set of online products to help them fight housing tenancy, council tax and blue badge parking frauds, under new government guidelines.

The tools have been created as part of the "Fighting fraud locally" strategy. The strategy was the result of an eight-month review led by the National Fraud Authority (NFA) and is being supported by the department for Communities and Local Government and the Local Government Association.

The NFA said it worked with private and public sector partners to develop the online package of anti-fraud products and guides to support the strategy, including:

  • a fraud checklist to help local authorities identify possible gaps in a council's current fraud response;
  • an online fraud resilience check to help local authorities measure their resilience to fraud and assess if they need to improve;
  • a counter-fraud and corruption e-learning training course to help councils raise levels of awareness among staff and facilitate better detection rates; and
  • an online 'fraud zone' and discussion forum containing examples of anti-fraud best practice.

The free fraud resilience assessment tool asks users to answer 29 questions, based on professional standards for counter fraud work. It assesses the extent to which their organisation is effectively protected against fraud and is designed to help authorities ensure they have adequate protection in place.

Mike Haley, the NFA's director of public sector fraud, said: "If councils implement the recommendations and adopt the good practice set out in the strategy significant savings could be made – money which can be used to protect frontline services. We hope the free products we have helped develop will make a tangible difference in helping defeat fraudsters who target councils."

In its recently published annual fraud indicator report, the NFA estimates that fraud costs the economy £73bn a year – £2.2bn of which affects local government.

This article was originally published at Guardian Government Computing.

Guardian Government Computing is a business division of Guardian Professional, and covers the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. For updates on public sector IT, join the Government Computing Network here.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
Why did it take antivirus giants YEARS to drill into super-scary Regin? Symantec responds...
FYI this isn't just going to target Windows, Linux and OS X fans
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Home Office: Fancy flogging us some SECRET SPY GEAR?
If you do, tell NOBODY what it's for or how it works
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described
'A degree of technical competence rarely seen'
Syrian Electronic Army in news site 'hack' POP-UP MAYHEM
Gigya redirect exploit blamed for pop-rageous ploy
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.