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Combatting economic crime through analysis, intelligence and collaboration

I joined Companies House in late 2019 as part of the work to improve how we use and share intelligence to deter the abuse of the register and to combat economic crime.

Our goal is to become less reactive and become better at identifying suspicious activity. It's hoped much of this will be delivered through the new powers set to be introduced following the proposals in the Corporate Transparency and Register Reform consultation – but we have already made enormous strides in this area.

Although I'm relatively new to the organisation, the foundations for this work have been developed by colleagues over the last few years who have worked hard to build our reputation among law enforcement agencies and other government departments. We now routinely work with the police, Insolvency Service, HMRC and many more partner organisations who see the power of our data to support their own work. But there is more to do.

A key part of my current role is to develop this even further, by identifying and engaging with new partners to demonstrate how we can add value to their work and explore opportunities for the future.

We are also members of the Government Agency Intelligence Network (GAIN), a multi-agency collaboration set-up to support and promote a more coordinated partnership working to tackle serious and organised crime.

In our partnership, we provide support to a wide range of investigations including money laundering, organised crime and fraud, but also add value to investigations into many other types of criminality. And for many of these it would not be immediately obvious how Companies House data could assist, but it shows the breadth and value of the information we hold.

A good example of collaboration is through our work with HMRC, where we were one of the first organisations to make use of the powers in the Digital Economy Act. We initiated a trial, analysing accounts data held by HMRC and Companies House to identify potential fraud and error. This ensured Companies House held a more accurate picture of the financial health of companies and allowed HMRC to identify unpaid tax liabilities.

We are now starting the next chapter of our transformation, with the advent of:

  • register reform
  • developing new tools
  • developing our people
  • creating an intelligence function
  • improving our capacity to service enforcement partners’ needs

Companies House is in a position where it can make a real difference in the UK’s fight against economic crime. We have come a long way already and are looking forward to building upon this in the future. The future is bright and exciting.

Our 5 year strategy details a new vision for Companies House and outlines our commitment to driving confidence in the UK economy.

Read more about how we’re helping to make the UK the best place to start and run a business.

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1 comment

  1. Comment by L Schakley Van Zyl posted on

    Collaborations always a positive working as one. I hope this relationship with HMRC includes Business fraud throughout the Pandemic!