Data matching

As a local authority we are required by law to protect the public funds we administer. In order to prevent and detect fraud, and in compliance with the law, the Council may share information provided to it with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds.

The Cabinet Office requires the Council to carry out data matching exercises. Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or another body. This is usually personal information. Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found it may indicate that there is an inconsistency which requires further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out.

The Council is required by the Cabinet Office to participate in an annual data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. This is known as the National Fraud Initiative (NFI). Guidance on the NFI exercise can be found on the Cabinet office website.

We have to provide this data in accordance with the Serious Crime Act 2007. The use of data by the Cabinet Office in a data matching exercise is carried out with statutory authority under its powers in Part 2A of the Audit Commission Act 1998. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned under the Data Protection Act 2018.

Details of the particular sets of data we are required to provide for each data matching exercise, the Code of Data Matching Practice and information on the Cabinet Office's legal powers and the reasons why it matches particular information can all be found on its website.

For further information on the Council's participation in the NFI exercise, please contact the Corporate Head of Resources. Email

The Council's Privacy Statement and Fair Processing notice can be found by clicking on the Privacy Statement link at the bottom of this page. Here you will find more detail on the way in which your data is used by the Council to prevent and detect fraud.




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