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Just one suspected case of identity fraud identified by Social Protection this year – Mitchell

31 May, 2017 - by Denise Mitchell TD

Sinn Féin deputy Spokesperson for Social Protection Denise Mitchell TD says figures she has received from the Department of Social Protection show that there has only been one case of suspected identity fraud in the Social Welfare system so far in 2017, while the Department has no records of people using disguises to falsely claim welfare payments.

Deputy Denise Mitchell said:

“It is extraordinary that the Social Protection Minister could take to the national airwaves and start waffling about people wearing false beards and make-up to fraudulently claim welfare payments when the Department has no records to back up these assertions.

“On top of that, the Department has confirmed that there has only been one suspected case of identity fraud so far this year.”

Deputy Mitchell and her party colleague Deputy David Cullinane had submitted an array of questions to the Department following the launch of the Department's welfare fraud publicity campaign

Deputy Mitchell added:

“The reply from the Department also outlines how the facial recognition software used by the Department would not be compromised by fake-beards or make-up.

“Leo Varadkar attempted to whip-up a frenzy claiming that people in disguises were defrauding the State. The figures revealed today show that more focus should be spent on tackling overpayments in the system – which is where the real loss to the taxpayer occurs.” 

Note: Please see the PQ in question attached 

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