'Lie detectors' will help catch benefit fraudsters
Thursday 08 May 2008
A scheme which checks voice stress levels to catch benefit fraudsters is to be extended across the country under moves which could save £30m a year.
The Government will provide £1.5m to increase the number of local authorities in Britain testing the technology from seven to 22. Ministers believe that about 10,000 fraudsters could be caught using the voice risk analysis (VRA) technology, which picks up any stress in a caller's voice as they answer questions.
The Work and Pensions minister James Plaskitt announced the extension of the scheme during a visit to Harrow, north-west London, one of the local authorities which piloted VRA, saving it an estimated £420,000 in benefit claims.
"This positive and encouraging news from the pilots shows that this technology is helping to combating benefit fraud," he said. "It is also making it quicker and easier to review claims, especially for those people who are genuinely entitled to benefits.
"Overall, the huge majority of people who receive benefits are entitled to them. However, there is a minority who will still try to steal money from those people who are most vulnerable. We need to continue to do more to make sure that taxpayers' money always goes to those who need it most."
VRA technology spots changes in a caller's voice, enabling trained operators to decide whether a call is high or low risk and what further action to take.
About £13bn is paid out in housing benefit every year to four million people, with an estimated £150m claimed fraudulently.
Russell Brand accuses FOX News anchor Sean Hannity of terrorism after aggressive Israel-Gaza debate
Sally Farmiloe dead: Howards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, dies aged 60
Sabina Altynbekova, the girl branded 'too good looking' for volleyball, says social media obsession with her is a 'bit much'
Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
Australian model Robyn Lawley stages naked protest against huge coal mine seven times the size of Sydney Harbour
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- 1 Sabina Altynbekova, the girl branded 'too good looking' for volleyball, says social media obsession with her is a 'bit much'
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
- 4 Zayn Malik on Israel-Gaza: One Direction singer bombarded with Twitter death threats after posting #FreePalestine
- 5 'Hello mum, this is going to be hard for you to read ...'
- < Previous
- Next >