Getting on top of identity fraud in tax and welfare

Identity fraud is big business. People are putting so much personal information online or sharing it via social media that it’s become easy for fraudsters to steal identities and use them for their own personal gain.

And it’s not just the private sector that’s being hit by identity fraud. Tax and welfare agencies recognize that it’s a problem they must also address. In the US, for example, identity fraud is a major issue affecting the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at a federal level and tax revenue and unemployment insurance administration at state level. In fact identity theft was the number one US tax scam in 2013 as a result of the growth in e-filing of tax returns.

At the federal level IRS is taking a number of steps to tackle ID theft. It has implemented dozens of identity filters; tripled the number of ID theft investigations; and trained 35,000 employees who work with taxpayers to recognize identity theft indicators and help people victimized by identity theft.

A tech-led picture emerges elsewhere in the world as tax and welfare administration becomes increasingly digital. Agencies are investing in the capability to validate identity online to protect against large scale identity theft or fraudulent claims or reclaims.

One of the smartest weapons in the anti-fraud arsenal is Capgemini’s Trouve solution tackling fraud and error in tax and welfare. Trouve enables real-time transaction monitoring and risking based on behaviors. It allows agencies to assure the identity of an individual accessing online services directly within the transaction, using ‘shared secrets’ and biometrics. An automated decision service informs the flow of the transaction based on the result of identity validation.

As well as being a great tool in the fight against identity fraud, Trouve can help to increase confidence around the security of online channels amongst compliant customers. That’s surely a big plus as agencies continue to transfer customer contact online.

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