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Up to 40 per cent have not made key checks on their credit rating or electoral roll entry

Cameron calls in 'bounty hunters' to catch benefit fraudsters

David Cameron was accused of eroding people's financial privacy as he unveiled plans to expand the use of credit reference agencies to track down welfare cheats.

The credit agency: Why Experian was enlisted for the battle

Judging by its luxurious and airy London headquarters, business is booming for Experian. Corporate clients, including politicians and civil servants, are briefed on the company's products in large presentation rooms in their offices with panoramic views of the capital.

Credit agencies lined up to pinpoint benefit cheats

Use of private financial data attacked as a 'recipe for snooping'

Business Diary: Hangover hint for Experian

Apparently Britain's high streets are going to be flooded with shoppers tomorrow, at least according to Experian Footfall, which yesterday produced the latest (desperate) attempt to cash in on some of the publicity generated by the World Cup. The information services company reckons there will be a sharp increase in Saturday shoppers compared to last week because there is no England game. It appears not to have occurred to researchers that the same England fans who avoided the shops last week might have plenty of alcohol-fuelled motivation to do the same thing this week after tonight's game against Algeria in Cape Town.

Social networks overtake Google in UK web hits

Facebook's battle for internet supremacy with Google has intensified after social networks received more internet hits than search engines for the first time in the UK.

House Doctor: We were targeted by a fraudster. Could our remortgage be affected as a result?

Question: We were recently fraud victims and had our credit card cloned, which I assume has damaged our credit record. Will our remortgage next month be affected? We can't afford any higher rate than what we're paying at the moment. John Watt, Bath

Plastic surgery: How to boost your credit-card rating

Card providers are beefing up their rates and getting choosy about who they accept, writes Chiara Cavaglieri

Easter boom on high street as Britons spend holiday shopping

Shoppers stormed the high street over the Easter weekend, shrugging off continuing concerns over the economy on what is traditionally retailers' second most important weekend.

Facebook overtakes Google

Social networking site hits 'important milestone' in the US market

Consumer rights: Bogus tenant is making life a misery

How to get compensation from a letting agent who lands you with a dodgy renter...Tips on the best ways to sell a late relative's household goods

Consumer rights: 'Help me repair my bruised credit rating'

How to reduce the likelihood of having a credit card application turned down...What are your rights when your employer decides to cut your hours?

Sean O'Grady: Meet Motorway Man, the decisive voter in Election 2010

He is in his thirties. He drives. He voted Labour in 1997, and has a small family

More than 3,700 jobs at risk after Ethel Austin hits the buffers again

The discount fashion retailer Ethel Austin collapsed into administration for the second time in less than two years yesterday, leaving the jobs of 3,714 staff at its 276 branches hanging in the balance.

Time to rescue old money from sleeping bank accounts

Wake up before your cash vanishes, say Alessia Horwich and Julian Knight
Life and Style
“What is it like being a girl?” was the question on the lips of one inquisitive Reddit user this week
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peopleDave Legeno, the actor who played werewolf Fenrir Greyback in the Harry Potter films, has died
Arts and Entertainment
Armando Iannucci, the creator of 'The Thick of It' says he has
tvArmando Iannucci to concentrate on US show Veep
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beauty
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Luis Suarez looks towards the crowd during the 2-1 victory over England
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Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
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Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

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German supporters (left) and Argentina fans
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A mugshot of Ian Watkins released by South Wales Police following his guilty pleas
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A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice