Local Authorities work together to tackle Public Sector fraud

West Oxfordshire District Council has joined forces with authorities across neighbouring Gloucestershire to establish a specialist unit to tackle fraud and the misuse of public funds, and to assist with enforcement and prosecution across the region.
The hub is now planning the procurement and implementation of a data matching system to legally store and match data across its partners, with the potential to share information with other public bodies and fraud hubs across the South West.
Cllr Toby Morris, West Oxfordshire District Council’s Cabinet Member for Resources said, “Preventing fraud within the public sector is vital as it costs the tax payer millions of pounds each year. We are already seeing evidence that better intelligence techniques and joint working is assisting with uncovering fraudulent activity.” 
The council partnership comprises West Oxfordshire, Cotswold and Forest of Dean District Councils, Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Borough Councils and Gloucestershire County Council. The Unit provides services for Ubico and Cheltenham Borough Homes and has the ability to extend these services to other Registered Social Landlords.  
The Partnership obtained over £400,000 worth of funding from the Department of Communities and Local Government in 2015 to help set up the Counter Fraud Unit. 
The Counter Fraud Unit can be contacted by telephone on 01285 623400, 01285 623401 or 01242 264215 or by email fraud.referrals@cotswold.gov.uk