We’re required by law to protect the public funds we administer. In order to prevent and detect fraud, we may share information provided to us with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds, or when undertaking a public function.
Data matching exercise
As part of our work in preventing and detecting fraud, we participate in the National Fraud Initiative (NFI). This is a data matching exercise organised by the government and requires us, along with every other Council in England, to provide particular sets of data to the Minister for the Cabinet Office.
The government matches these sets of data to identify suspicious details and sends the information back to us to investigate. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or any other explanation until an investigation is carried out.
Consent for data matching
Data matching exercises are carried out by the government with statutory authority under Part 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 (external link). It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned under the General Data Protection Regulation (external link).
To learn more about the government's legal powers and why they data match particular information, see the Fair Processing Notice (external link).
For further details on data matching at Wigan Council contact Internal Audit on 01942 827867.
Security for data matching
The government keeps personal data securely during data matching exercises and destroys it afterwards, subject to their Code of Data Matching Practice (external link).