Social security: independent analyst's report on consultation on the investigation of offences regulations

Independent analysis of the consultation responses received in relation to the nvestigation of offences regulations and the code of practice for investigations.



2. One organisation indicated that the regulations represented "an unnecessary interference to an individuals' right to privacy under article 8 of the European Convention of Human Rights."

3. One respondent suggested that a Data Protection Impact Assessment should be conducted in each case where data was requested from a data controller to assess necessity and proportionality.

4. One other respondent suggested that the regulations should include the possibility of a witness, alleged partner, etc. being guilty of an offence if they have knowingly provided false information in a witness statement or interview.

5. The same organisation noted that paragraph 15 of the draft Code was incorrect in stating that paragraph 2 of schedule 2 to the DPA allows counter fraud officers to make requests of other organisations. The legal basis for authorised officers to request information, including personal data, will come from regulation 4 of the proposed Regulations. Equally, that will be the legal basis for any person disclosing personal data to an authorised officer.


7. One respondent specifically mentioned the Centre for Counter Fraud Studies at the University of Portsmouth as potentially being able to provide advice and insight on what would constitute a robust training programme.

8. Fraud Guide: staff guide Interviews Under Caution, 01 Planning and Preparation, page 515 - Department for Work and Pensions

9. The same organisation sought reassurances that any failure or error by Agency staff that led to a loss of benefits would be compensated to the loss suffered.

10. This view contrasted with others' comments elsewhere in the consultation that payments should never be suspended or stopped until fraud had been proven.



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