Following publication of The National Fraud Initiative’s 2012 report, earlier today, Alan Downey, partner and head of public sector at KPMG comments on the measures needed to reduce public sector fraud.
He says: “What the National Fraud Initiative figures show is that fraud, overpayments and errors, particularly in pensions, council tax and housing benefit, are all causing huge losses to the public sector totalling £229m in England since May 2010. This is of major concern at a time when the public purse is already stretched thinly.
“Of course, it’s fair to say that, as organisations across the public sector implement austerity measures and change their day-to-day business operations, fraudulent claims should become easier to detect. But at the same time, the reality is that there are fewer people available to identify fraud meaning that judgements have to be made about what resources are put in place to tackle the problem. What matters now is how organisations put robust checks and balances in place to ensure that decisions about fund distribution are not made in isolation. They also need to agree a consistent set of criteria to determine how funds are allocated.
“The UK cannot afford to foot the bill for fraud and the only way to tackle it is to ensure the right people and processes are established. It’s tough enough providing a service with reduced funding so measures must be carried out to prevent budgets escaping through the back door.”
Mike Petrook, KPMG Press Office
020 7311 5271 (t), 07917 384 576 (m) or firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors:
KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, is a subsidiary of KPMG Europe LLP and operates from 22 offices across the UK with nearly 11,000 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a turnover of £1.6 billion in the year ended September 2010. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. We operate in 150 countries and have more than 138,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. KPMG International provides no client services.