This Authority is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. It may share information provided to it with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds, in order to prevent and detect fraud.
The Cabinet Office conducts data matching exercises to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. This is one of the ways in which the Minister for the Cabinet Office takes responsibility within government for public sector efficiency and reform.
Data matching involves comparing sets of data, such as the payroll or benefits records of a body, against other records held by the same or another body to see how far they match. The data is usually personal information. The data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found it may indicate that there is an inconsistency that 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 processing of data by the Cabinet Office in a data matching exercise is carried out with statutory authority under its powers in Part 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned under data protection legislation or the GDPR.
Data matching by the Cabinet Office is subject to a Code of Data Matching Practice. This may be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/code-of-data-matching-practice-for-national-fraud-initiative. For further information on the Audit Commission’s legal powers and the reasons why it matches particular information, see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/fair-processing-national-fraud-initiative/fair-processing-level-3-full-text. For further information on data matching at this authority contact firstname.lastname@example.org.