‘Tackle and prevent fraud’ is one of the priorities in the Police and Crime Plan. He wants to achieve this, and for people across County Durham and Darlington to have confidence that their concerns are both understood and taken seriously by the police.
In 2018, HM Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services carried out a nationwide inspection of the effectiveness and efficiency of the police response to fraud, including online fraud.View the full copy of the inspection report.
The report – Fraud: Time to Choose - identifies a number of issues relating to the organisational structures that support fraud investigations at local and national levels, and correctly suggests that greater clarity of roles and responsibilities is needed. Good practice is regularly shared between forces on a number of topics, and this is encouraged and endorsed in the inspection report.
In Durham, the force is due to have fraud investigation processes peer-reviewed by City of London Police, the acknowledged experts in this area. The report’s focus on victims is also important, and it reflects the need to provide clear advice and support to victims of fraud.
The Constabulary will be asking City of London Police to peer-review these processes so that the force can put in place and revisions to existing procedures by 31 March 2020.
This is also an area where Durham Constabulary will be asking City of London Police to consider during the peer review. Afterwards, the force will be in a position to publish new guidance for Officers on responding to and investigating allegations of fraud.