12 Nov, 20209:40 am-3:40 pm
Online Conference
This event has passed.

This Forum will provide participants with the opportunity to examine successful methods of tackling fraud and corruption in the public sector. Attendees will be provided with an update from Cifas and Local Government Association on the ‘Fighting Fraud and Corruption Locally Strategy 2020’ as well as hearing from fraud experts from the Cabinet Office and City of London Police. In addition, best practice practitioners will share guidance on implementing effective data matching practices, building an organisational counter-fraud culture, and developing the in-house capacity to recover public funds.

This online forum will examine successful methods of tackling fraud and corruption in the public sector. Attendees will be provided with an update from Cifas on the ‘Fighting Fraud and Corruption Locally Strategy 2020’ and hear from fraud experts from the Cabinet Office and City of London Police. In addition, best practice practitioners will share guidance on implementing effective data matching practices, building an organisational counter-fraud culture, and developing the in-house capacity to recover public funds.

This event is split into 3 sections:

  • Policy Update
  • Innovating Audits and Detection of Risk
  • Preventing Fraud Through Capacity-Building

What to expect from the online experience:

  • Delivered via the next generation conference engagement platform Swapcard
  • Matchmaking networking and live meeting scheduling with delegates
  • Live interaction tools and break out rooms
  • Replay functions so you never miss a session
  • Varied formats and screen breaks to support an engaging experience
  • Post-event resources and presentations

Watch this video to find out more about our new online experience

Policy Background

According to the Cross-Government Fraud Landscape Report 2019, the government loses between £2.8bn-£22.6bn per year to fraud. Local authorities are expected to lose £7.8bn specifically, and according to the CIPFA Fraud and Corruption Tracker, the four major fraud areas include council tax, disabled parking, housing, and business rates. Council tax fraud is expected to cost £30.6m alone in 2018/19.

In seeking to address a challenge that continues to grow in scale and complexity, the government established a Counter Fraud Function in 2018 which brings civil servants together to fight fraud across the public sector. In the following year, senior leaders from the Function came together to agree a Counter Fraud Functional Strategy set to shape their confined efforts until 2023. This included the development of the world’s first public sector Counter Fraud Profession to build capacity and support organisations to evolve.

To support local authorities more specifically, the Government in collaboration with Cifas published the Fighting Fraud and Corruption Locally Strategy 2020 in March 2020. The strategy looks at current issues, risks and good practice and provides councils with a counter-fraud standard to benchmark their practices. In conjunction with this, to promote innovation in fraud prevention, the Local Government Authority (LGA) has also published case-studies from the Councils who received £16m funding from the Government’s Counter Fraud Fund in 2016. Furthermore, in June 2020, The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government released their Local Government Procurement: Fraud and Corruption Risk Review, which outlined best practice and risks of fraud and corruption when councils procure and commission goods, works and services.

Local authorities must now work together to innovate auditing and detection of risk, prevent fraud through capacity-building, and use enforcement powers to recover public funds. Failure to do so will lead to increased financial strain on the public sector and a loss of confidence from the public.


9:40 am
Conference Login and Accessing the Online Platform

*Please note to comply with the latest public health guidance around Covid-19, this conference will run entirely via an online platform. Specific joining instructions and guidance will be provided to registered delegates

9:50 am
Chair's Welcome Address
Dave Carter
Dave Carter
Head of Counter Fraud Management
British Council
10:00 am
In Conversation With CIFAS: Discussing the Next Steps in Tackling Fraud Locally
  • Analysing the new ‘Fighting Fraud and Corruption Locally Strategy 2020’ including current risks, issues and best practice from councils who received £16m funding from the Government’s Counter Fraud Fund
  • Highlighting CIFAS resources including the ‘Protecting the Vulnerable’ service, Joint Fraud Taskforce and Joint Money Laundering Intelligence Force
  • Sharing how central government, local authorities and law enforcement can collaborate more effectively to tackle fraud and corruption in line with the ‘Local Authority Counter-Fraud Standards’
  • Commenting on the MHCLG’s Local Government Procurement: Fraud and Corruption Risk Review, including the impact it could have on supporting councils to tackle internal fraud and corruption
  • Evaluating the impact that Covid-19 has had on local councils fighting fraud
Rachael Tiffen
Rachael Tiffen
Director, Public Sector
10:30 am
Questions and Answers Session
10:45 am
11:00 am
On Demand Session: Creating a Counter-Fraud Culture Throughout the Council and Its Partners

*Please note this session will be pre-recorded and played on the day. 

  • Examining the development of the counter fraud unit made up of a wide range of professionals, including ex-police officers and housing experts, which has delivered savings of more than £7,000,000 since its conception
  • Highlighting exercises to ensure collaborative working between the council and its partners, including a memorandum of understanding (MoU), opening offices to police officers and multi-agency exercises
  • Outlining the e-learning fraud awareness module rolled out across the wider organization, focusing on high risk areas including housing, direct payment, schools, and corporate property
Steve Sparkes
Steve Sparkes
Head of Audit Services
Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
Zoe Covington
Zoe Covington
Counter Fraud Manager
Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
11:20 am
Releasing the Potential of Data Matching and Analytics to Detect Fraud
  • Outlining the work of the National Fraud Initiative (NFI) in matching electronic data within and between public and private bodies, improving access to data and analytics techniques
  • Sharing NFI products for improved data matching including AppCheck, ReCheck and the FraudHub and providing case studies to exemplify how these work
  • Evaluating the work the NFI has been doing around Covid-19 and understanding what the counter-fraud response to Covid-19 has been
Darren Shillington
Darren Shillington
Head of the National Fraud Initiative Team
Cabinet Office
11:40 am
Case Study: Developing an Innovative Risk-Based System to Tackle Fraud
  • Sharing insights into how the council developed an innovative risk-based system to tackle fraud which aimed to identify suspicious activity early on
  • Offering guidance on how councils can carry out intensive checks and risks assessments on people applying for council services, alongside ongoing eligibility checks
  • Highlighting the success of the system, which resulted in savings of more than £1.5 million and the council being nominated for a Public Finance Award for Outstanding Proactive Fraud Detection and Recovery
Zac O’Neil
Zac O’Neil
Counter Head of Fraud
London Borough of Hillingdon
12:00 pm
Questions and Answers Session
12:20 pm
Lunch, Virtual Networking & Delegate Meet Ups
12:50 pm
Keynote: Developing and Delivering the Government Counter-Fraud Profession
  • Outlining the development of the government counter-fraud profession, including the 7,000 members, and discussing future plans to include local authorities
  • Talking about the career pathway and the Counter Fraud Investigator (CFI) Apprenticeship Scheme
  • Highlighting resources to aid professional development, including the development of training and qualifications and the Public Sector Counter Fraud Journal.
  • Examining progress made across government and beyond, plus how the introduction of the profession has improved outcomes in terms of tackling fraud
Chris Freeman
Chris Freeman
Head of Engagement and Membership - Counter Fraud Centre of Expertise
Cabinet Office
1:10 pm
Questions and Answers Session
1:20 pm
Workshop: Enhancing Whistleblowing Across Local Government
  • What is whistleblowing and what are the legal requirements?
  • Spot the difference: whistleblowing or grievance?
  • What prevents people from speaking out?
  • What is best practice in the workplace? The three core elements which form a successful whistleblowing system
Laura Fatah
Laura Fatah
Senior Legal Advisor and Policy Officer
1:50 pm
2:05 pm
Insights into Fraud Activity across the UK
Andrew Fyfe
Andrew Fyfe
Detective Chief Inspector
Action Fraud, City of London Police
2:25 pm
Case Study: Building Local Partnerships to Tackle Counter Fraud
  • Building key local partnerships across Durham, including with police and registered landlords to take a localised approach to tackling fraud
  • Sharing guidance on tackling fraud at a local level, including challenges encountered and how to overcome them
  • Sharing the work Durham has been doing throughout the Covid-19 pandemic in tackling fraud at a local level and assessing what Covid-19 specific counter-fraud initiatives have and haven’t worked
  • Outlining the benefits of partnership working and how a localised approach has led to significant savings from uncovering fraud
Steven Graham
Steven Graham
Fraud Manager
Durham Council
2:45 pm
Questions and Answers Session
3:00 pm
Interview: The Impact of Covid-19 on Fraud and How Local Authorities can Tackle Risks
  • Discussing the impact of covid-19 on fraud in the public sector, including a growing number of scams to exploit government support schemes
  • Highlighting the different types of fraud emerging and considering how local authorities can tackle these
  • Sharing how councils are changing their ways of working to respond to these emerging risks
  • Considering what more can be done to prevent, detect and respond to fraud during covid-19
Jeff Fish
Jeff Fish
Corporate Fraud Investigator
Swansea Council
3:20 pm
Chair's Summary and Close

*programme subject to change


This Forum is specifically designed for Local and Central Government and the wider Public Sector. Typical job titles will include:

  • Heads of Audit or Internal Audit
  • Counter-Fraud and Corruption Managers
  • Heads of Assurance
  • Finance Directors
  • Chief Executives
  • Revenues and Benefits Managers
  • Case Managers
  • Operation Managers
  • Cabinet Members for Finance and Governance
  • Finance Officers
  • Investigating Officers
  • Procurement Business Managers
  • Account Managers
This Forum is also open to the Police, Health, Private and Voluntary Sectors to encourage networking and debate.


  • Public Sector
    £295+ VAT
  • Voluntary Sector
    £245+ VAT
  • Private Sector
    £395+ VAT
If you feel you have received an incorrect price or for any enquiries please contact 020 3770 6580 or [email protected] prior to completing the booking.


The Cifas Fraud and Cyber Academy provides accredited education and trusted training in fraud prevention and investigation for professionals in the public and private sectors. An SFJ Awards Approved Learning Centre, we work with leading universities and industry experts to deliver postgraduate study, Ofqual-regulated qualifications, and specialist courses and training.