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Crimestoppers COVID Fraud Hotline

by Mark Rowe

The UK public can now call a free new COVID Fraud Hotline (0800 587 5030) anonymously, as run by the crime reporting charity Crimestoppers, to report suspected fraudulent activity.

Some 150 COVID support schemes have been introduced by UK government. A recent National Audit Office (NAO) report found that the Bounce Back Loan Scheme succeeded in quickly supporting small businesses, but government faces a potential loss of £15 billion to £26 billion through businesses not being able to repay the loans; and fraud. The NAO called for government to consider how it might better prevent fraud in any future schemes.

Cabinet Office Minister Julia Lopez said: “Many people work hard to pay their taxes, so it’s a gross injustice that fraudsters are shamefully taking advantage of measures set up to help people during the lockdown. We cannot let criminals profit from the COVID crisis, as every pound stolen by fraudsters could be invested in our vital public services. This is why we are urging the public to report any information to the Crimestoppers COVID Fraud Hotline.”

Chief Executive of Crimestoppers, Mark Hallas said: “Fraud against the public purse denies access to vital funds that benefit us all. It’s crucial that anyone who has information or knows of someone who has fraudulently claimed Government grants or loans to contact our charity completely anonymously and tell us what you know.”

The line is open 24/7; or, fill in an anonymous form at

According to the Cabinet Office, the public can look out for tell tale signs: unusual buying activity by companies and individuals, and cold calling by those falsely claiming that they are from the government, offering money for schemes.

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