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LILLEY LAUNCHES CRACKDOWN ON LONDON BENEFIT FRAUD

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Regulations to pave the way for a pilot scheme cracking down on London benefit fraud have been laid before parliame...
Regulations to pave the way for a pilot scheme cracking down on London benefit fraud have been laid before parliament today by Peter Lilley, Secretary of State for Social Security.

If successful, the scheme could be extended throughout the country.

The regulations will allow the Department of Social Security (DSS) and local authorities, who deal with housing benefit and council tax benefit, to exchange and cross-check information about claims via a housing benefit central register.

The register will be able to identify individuals who may be making multiple or fraudulent claims in different local authorities at the same time.

Almost all the 33 London boroughs have expressed an interest in joining the pilot scheme, which will begin in the autumn.

Commenting on the regulations, Peter Lilley said:

'The housing benefit central register which we are piloting, can detect individuals who might be making multiple or other fraudulent claims.

'If the local authorities and agencies which pay out social security benefits can share information via the register, it will ensure that greater controls are in place to identify fraudsters.

'It is important that we protect honest claimants and taxpayers by stamping out fraud and abuse of the social security system. That is why we have made the fight against benefit fraud one of our top priorities.'

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