20,000 False Tax Credit Claims

Silicon reports that more than half of the 40,000 suspicious tax credit applications detected by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) during a six-month period last year are believed to have been made by organised criminal gangs, new government figures have revealed.

The huge rise in fraud attempts forced HMRC to close the online tax credits portal at the beginning of December last year after it discovered personal details of 13,000 civil servants working at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) had been stolen and used by criminals to make false claims.

HMRC admits it still does not know the full extent of the fraud.

The tax credits portal remains closed and HMRC admits it still does not know the full extent of the fraud. But the department has now revealed it intervened in 38,924 suspicious claims between April and November last year before they got to payment stage.