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The following systems will be unavailable from 2.00pm on Thursday 29 February until 7.30am on Tuesday 5 March: our online Council Tax, business rates and housing benefit services, and our welfare assistance form. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Fighting fraud and corruption

This page explains fraud and corruption and what we do to protect ourselves, our employees, partners and the public from it.

What is Fraud

The Fraud Act 2006 describes fraud as the intention to make gain or cause loss under three main headings:

  • fraud by false representation
  • fraud by failing to disclose information
  • fraud by abuse of position

There are further subheadings of fraud described including possession of articles for use in fraud, making or supplying articles for use in frauds, participating in fraudulent business and or obtaining services dishonestly.

What is corruption & bribery

Corruption is defined as the offering, giving, soliciting or acceptance of an inducement or reward, or showing any favour or disfavour which may influence any person to act improperly.

Bribery is defined in the Bribery Act 2010 "as giving someone a financial or other advantage to encourage that person to perform their functions or activities improperly or to reward a person for having already done so, in order to gain personal, commercial, regulatory or contractual advantage".  It is the most common form of corruption.

Fraud and corruption drain our time and money from those who really need our support.

Protecting against fraud

We take fraud and corruption very seriously and are committed to preventing and detecting fraud and corruption. We aim to develop a culture of zero tolerance against fraud and corruption.

We have a Corporate Fraud Team and all instances of potential fraud or corruption that are reported to us will be investigated rigorously and promptly, and appropriate action will be taken. We encourage anyone concerned about fraud or corruption concerning the council, its partners or wholly-owned companies, to report it using the contact usdetails.

For details of our approach, download the following documents:

You can find further details about benefit fraud and how to report it by looking at our Report Housing Benefit fraud page.

Durham County Council Counter Fraud Data 2020/21



Number of occasions we used powers under the Prevention of Social Housing Fraud (Power to Require Information) (England) Regulations 2014 or similar powers


Total number of employees undertaking investigations and prosecutions of fraud


Total number of full time equivalent employees undertaking investigations and prosecutions of fraud


Total number of professionally accredited counter fraud specialists 


Total number of full time equivalent professionally accredited counter fraud specialists


Total amount spent on the investigation and prosecution of fraud 


Total number of fraud cases investigated


Total number of occasions on which fraud was identified


Total monetary value of the fraud that was detected


Total monetary value of the fraud that was recovered

Not recorded

Related guidance

You may be interested in watching the YouTube videos, produced by Action Fraud, that highlight some of the methods used by fraudsters to obtain personal details of unsuspecting individuals for fraudulent purposes. 

Be on your guard. As the old saying goes: 'If it is too good to be true, it probably is!'

Contact us
Corporate Fraud
03000 266 745
Our address is:
  • Corporate Fraud Team
  • Durham County Council
  • County Hall (Room G90)
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UL

Internal Audit
03000 269 645
Our address is:
  • Durham County Council
  • Room G90
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5PT