Transparency Code Metadata for Fraud
Why we publish this type of data/information
Pendle Borough Council does not tolerate fraud, theft and corruption within its overall governance arrangements. There are two elements within its strategy:
1. reporting and investigating benefit fraud through the Council's partnership with Liberata; and
2. investigating and reporting on all instances of fraud and corruption within its local service arrangements – provided by the services of the Internal Audit Unit.
As part of Pendle Borough Council's commitment to increase openness and transparency we publish details of counter fraud activities.
We present quarterly Anti-Fraud, Theft and Corruption reports to the Accounts and Audit Committee and also publish these on our website, along with our annual audit return to the Audit Commission and the Annual Audit Letter.
We also publish our Annual Statement of Accounts which contains data/information relevant to fraud and our various anti-fraud, corruption and whistleblowing policies.
Other related information
The definition of fraud for the purposes of this data publication is 'an intentional false representation, including failure to declare information or abuse of position that is carried out to make gain, cause loss or expose another to the risk of loss'. The definition does not strictly adhere to a legal definition of fraud but covers a slightly wider area where management has taken authorised action including but not limited to disciplinary action, civil action and criminal prosecution.
Counter fraud activities in this context only include activities to prevent fraudulent claims against public sector or related organisations. It does not include activities to investigate or discover fraudulent activities covered under regulatory services such as trading standards or environmental health.
Whilst fraud investigated by councils generally includes benefits fraud this changed in April 2015 when the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) took responsibility for the investigation of benefit fraud in Pendle via a new Single Fraud Investigation Service.
Other fraud types investigated by councils generally relate to council tax support, business rates, right to buy, abuse of position, social care, payroll, pensions, expenses, false insurance claims, procurement, and others.
The Council also participates in the National Fraud Initiative (NFI) which is managed by the Audit Commission. This is a process by which the Council provides a range of datasets to the Audit Commission on a bi-annual basis.
The Audit Commission then undertakes an exercise that matches electronic data within and between public and private sector bodies to prevent and detect fraud. This includes police authorities, local probation boards, fire and rescue authorities as well as local councils and a number of private sector bodies.
When there is a match, there may be something that warrants investigation by the relevant body. For example, when data matching shows a person listed as dead and also in receipt of a pension.
What information is included in this data?
This data contains:
- number of occasions we use powers under the Prevention of Social Housing Fraud (Power to require Information) (England) Regulations 2014, or similar powers
- total number (absolute and full time equivalent - FTE) of employees undertaking investigations and prosecutions of fraud
- total number (absolute and FTE) of professionally accredited counter fraud specialists
- amount spent by the authority on the investigation and prosecution of fraud
- number of fraud cases investigated
What information is not included in this data?
In addition to that information above, the Local Government Transparency Code recommends that local authorities publish:
- total number of cases of irregularity investigated
- total number of occasions on which a) fraud and b) irregularity was identified
- total monetary value of a) the fraud and b) the irregularity that was detected, and
- total monetary value of a) the fraud and b) the irregularity that was recovered
However, at this time we do not record this data.
This data is provided under the terms of the Open Government Licence.
How often do we publish this data?
Annually - We aim to provide this data within a month from the start of the new financial year.
What data systems do we use?
Future plans for this data
None at the present time.
What data have we removed?
What formats is the data available in?
Open Standards Level of this data
How to ask for more information
If you would like any further information relating to our organisation information, please contact us providing as much information as possible.