Stafford Borough Council is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. It may share information provided to it with other bodies responsible for; auditing, or administering public funds, or where undertaking a public function, in order to prevent and detect fraud.
The Cabinet Office is responsible for carrying out data matching exercises.
Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or another body to see how far they match. This is usually personal information. Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found it may indicate 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.
We participate in the Cabinet Office’s National Fraud Initiative: a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Minister for the Cabinet Office for matching for each exercise, as detailed here.
Examples of the information supplied include
- trade creditors’ payment history and trade creditors’ standing data
- housing waiting lists
- housing benefits
- council tax reduction scheme
- council tax
- electoral register
- insurance claimants
- licenses – market trader/operator, taxi driver and personal licenses to supply alcohol
- business rates
The use of data by the Cabinet Office in a data matching exercise is carried out with statutory authority under Part 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned with regard to current data protection legislation.
Data matching by the Cabinet Office is subject to a Code of Practice. View further information on the Cabinet Office’s legal powers and the reasons why it matches particular information. For further information on data matching at this authority contact Chief Internal Auditor on 01543 464415 or Legal Services Manager on 01785 619220