Pilot scheme to combat benefit cheats launches in Epping Forest

DWP campaign poster

DWP campaign poster

First published in News
Last updated
East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter - Epping Forest

A campaign to combat benefit fraud has been launched today.

Epping Forest is one of six pilot areas for the scheme which sees a mix of posters and adverts in newspapers and on Facebook urging readers to report suspected benefit cheats.

The Department for Work and Pensions will also send letters to claimants instructing them to tell authorities of any change in circumstances, such as getting a job or moving in with a partner, which may affect their benefits and lead to overpayments.

The pilot will last between four and six weeks and its success will be measured by analysing responses to the phone numbers publicised in the different media in order to find the most effective methods of communication for the national rollout.

Benefit fraud was estimated to have cost the government £1.2 billion in 2012/13 with claimant error responsible for £1.6 billion and errors by officials in handling claims costing £0.7 billion.

Comments (5)

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8:31pm Fri 3 Jan 14

Compton Akers says...

It is ok to target fraud without pointing the finger at the innocent needy who are struggling hard enough.
It is ok to target fraud without pointing the finger at the innocent needy who are struggling hard enough. Compton Akers
  • Score: 4

9:12am Sat 4 Jan 14

stickmanny says...

and meanwhile £35bn is owed to HMRC which they seem reluctant to pursue, especially when it comes to Vodafone, Amazon, Starbucks, Google et al who get away with a slapped wrist.
and meanwhile £35bn is owed to HMRC which they seem reluctant to pursue, especially when it comes to Vodafone, Amazon, Starbucks, Google et al who get away with a slapped wrist. stickmanny
  • Score: 7

1:45pm Sat 4 Jan 14

mdj says...

'Benefit fraud was estimated to have cost the government £1.2 billion in 2012/13 with claimant error responsible for £1.6 billion and errors by officials in handling claims costing £0.7 billion. '

Could we have an estimated figure for the total worth of valid benefits that go unclaimed, for whatever reason?
While all fraud rankles and should be stamped on, the balance may still be well in credit.
'Benefit fraud was estimated to have cost the government £1.2 billion in 2012/13 with claimant error responsible for £1.6 billion and errors by officials in handling claims costing £0.7 billion. ' Could we have an estimated figure for the total worth of valid benefits that go unclaimed, for whatever reason? While all fraud rankles and should be stamped on, the balance may still be well in credit. mdj
  • Score: 3

5:08pm Sat 4 Jan 14

stickmanny says...

Total spend is £85bn excluding state pensions. Approx £12bn goes unclaimed each year.

Fraud needs to be investigated but in terms of lost revenue it is not all that significant. Just another Tory/Daily Mail ruse to demonise certain sections of society.
Total spend is £85bn excluding state pensions. Approx £12bn goes unclaimed each year. Fraud needs to be investigated but in terms of lost revenue it is not all that significant. Just another Tory/Daily Mail ruse to demonise certain sections of society. stickmanny
  • Score: 5

4:21pm Mon 6 Jan 14

SNGreen says...

Something Like 2 or 3% claim benefits fraundently. So not a big problem. Agree it is about creating s scare story.
Something Like 2 or 3% claim benefits fraundently. So not a big problem. Agree it is about creating s scare story. SNGreen
  • Score: 4

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