Organisations join forces to fight fraud

The 37 organisations that have signed up to Fighting Fraud Together include: Association of British Insurers; British Bankers Association; Building Societies Association; Council of Mortgage Lenders; Federation of Small Businesses; Financial Services Authority; Land Registry; and Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.

It is the first time that the government, industry representatives, voluntary groups and law enforcement agencies have joined together on such a large scale to sign a joint commitment to tackle fraud.

All thirty-seven partners that have signed up to Fighting Fraud Together will contribute to and be accountable for its success. They are intent on expanding and extending the successful activities that exist in their sectors and sharing fraud intelligence across boundaries to prevent and disrupt the activities of fraudsters.

Fighting Fraud Together and its accompanying action plan place strong emphasis on preventing fraud through greater fraud awareness and self protection, combined with stronger government and industry prevention systems and controls. It also sets out a more effective approach to enforcement.

Examples of the new initiatives that are being progressed under Fighting Fraud Together include:

• Preventing fraud: Industry and the public sector will develop their intelligence-sharing capabilities to prevent fraud attacks

• Increasing awareness and reporting: A new research tool will help all sectors provide more targeted prevention advice to the public, particularly vulnerable people, and develop a better understanding of small businesses’ vulnerability to fraud and the support they need. Action Fraud will expand its fraud report taking capacity to include all financially motivated online crime.

• A more effective enforcement response: Greater intelligence capabilities of the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau will disrupt fraudsters’ activities and rapidly close down the channels through which they operate and launder money. Increasing the use of the civil system will bring more fraudsters to justice and there will be more redress for their victims.

Fighting Fraud Together is an active commitment that will continue to evolve. The aim of all who have signed up is to encourage many more industries and organisations to sign up and become involved in the coming year.

Speaking at the Fighting Fraud Together launch event at Mansion House, James Brokenshire MP, Minister for Crime and Security said: “I applaud the different organisations and industry groups that have joined together today to play their own part in Fighting Fraud Together. By sharing what we know, we will reduce fraud.

“Fraud causes serious harm to the public, to businesses and the wider economy. For too long fraud has almost been seen as a victimless crime. It isn’t and too often the victims are some of the most vulnerable members of our community. That’s why this new strategy is important to better target, prosecute and prevent it.

“The creation of a new Economic Crime Command as part of the National Crime Agency will also provide a more effective, better co-ordinated and intelligence-led response across all economic crime fighting agencies.”

National Fraud Authority chief executive, Stephen Harrison, commented: “Fraudsters can be beaten. We have seen reductions in fraud in some sectors in recent years but overall the threat is still growing. Fighting Fraud Together provides the means for all sectors of the economy to learn from each other and collaborate.

“As a result of Fighting Fraud Together I expect to see more sharing of intelligence, more fraud losses prevented, a greater number of criminal enterprises disrupted, more assets denied and more criminals brought to justice. We have the tools to fight back. Now we have the will and commitment to use them together to even greater effect.”