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Case Studies

Cash for counter fraud work

As part of the Home Office’s award of £100m for police ‘transformation projects’, the City of London Police, as the national lead force for force, has £6.1m on behalf of policing and the National Crime Agency to fund several projects on economic crime.

That includes a national taskforce for more integrated regional working on fraud; and a direct-entrant recruitment campaign for fraud detectives. The City force will work on fraud training and accreditation for specialist detectives across England and Wales, making use of the City of London Police’s Economic Crime Academy.

A second project will cover the way that police forces receive information from the national reporting line Action Fraud and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau. The project will integrate the Action Fraud and National Fraud Intelligence Bureau’s analytics platform with force record management systems, reducing the need to re-key data. Among the aims; to speed the process of sharing data to local forces, and allowing outcomes to be automatically captured. Multi-year funding has been awarded in support of this project, in recognition of the scale of the task.

A recent Home Office report on ‘the level of attrition in fraud and cyber crime cases reported to Action Fraud’ found little to commend any part of the process from the initial taking of a report from a victim to how the police at local level handled the crime.

City of London Police’s National Co-Ordinator for Economic Crime, Commander Karen Baxter said: “We are very pleased to have received this funding from the Home Office. The money will allow us to fulfil an aspiration that the City of London Police has had for a long time, to upskill police officers in economic crime and build fraud capabilities across the country. The results of this project allow us to transform police forces’ approach to fraud and help to tackle this type of crime.”

Separately, the National Data Exploitation Capability (NDEC) has been awarded £4m, and the National Assessment Centre (NAC) £500,000. A Joint Operations Team (JOT) – made up from NCA and GCHQ officers to tackle child sexual abuse and exploitation (CSAE) – will receive £2.2m.

The National Crime Agency (NCA) warns that the threat from serious and organised crime is changing and evolving; it is increasing in volume and complexity, as criminals become more innovative and elusive and technology gives criminals new ways to commit and conceal their crimes.

Steve Rodhouse, Director General (Operations) at the NCA said: “Today criminals can share indecent images of children, sell drugs or hack into national infrastructure from anywhere in the world. They can communicate covertly with other criminals across the globe through encrypted services and move their illicit finances from one jurisdiction to another online, through the use of crypto-currencies. To fully protect the public, the NCA must stay ahead of the criminals, develop our existing skills and share information and expertise in a way that delivers the biggest impact.

“Tackling the breadth of serious and organised crime requires a whole-system response, collaborating with partners across law enforcement, government bodies, the public, private and third sectors in the UK and internationally. This additional funding will help us police the UK more efficiently and effectively, and allow us to respond to the changing nature of crime.”

Minister for Policing and the Fire Service Nick Hurd said: “Criminals don’t stand still, and neither should our police forces. We’re determined to support police leaders in creating a modern, agile and responsive police service. The Police Transformation Fund is delivering real change in policing, and this new funding will continue to help forces improve efficiency and tackle threats like serious, organised and economic crime.”

Picture by Mark Rowe; stained glass, City of London, Guildhall.


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