National Fraud Initiative
What is data matching?
Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or other body. This is usually personal information. Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found it indicates that there is an inconsistency which requires further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out.
What data is checked and matched?
The data required from the Council includes information on:
- Housing benefit (via Department of Work and Pensions)
- Council Tax benefit (via Department of Work and Pensions)
- Staff payroll details
- Staff pension details
- Disabled parking - blue badge holders
- Supported care home residents
- Council tax
- Council tenants
The details are matched against details obtained from other local and central government bodies, the NHS and a number of private sector pension bodies. The relevant matches are produced at the beginning 2012, and inconsistencies are investigated by the Council.
Why does the Council have to do this?
We are required by law to do this. Audit Scotland currently requires the Council to participate in data matching exercises to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We have to provide particular sets of data to Audit Scotland for matching, and these are set out in Audit Scotland's handbook.
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