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Sharing Data Tools Across Government to Find Fraud in Pandemic Relief Funds

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Image of Infographic explaining how the PRAC interacts with international partners. Click on the image to open PDF in order to view full information.
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The PRAC’s Data Sharing Working Group recently collaborated with subject matter experts from government agencies in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia to share the data tools and techniques they use to help protect pandemic relief dollars. 

  • In the United Kingdom, the Centre for Expertise for Counter Fraud found high-risk business loans and shared that data with lenders who are using it to investigate for potential fraud.  

  • Australian government agencies are sharing data on stolen identities to protect victims and prevent thieves from stealing funds across multiple programs. The PRAC recently launched a new working group with a similar focus on protecting and assisting victims in recovering from identity fraud. 

  • Here in the US, data analytics are being used to find cases of “double dipping,” where thieves try to exploit multiple pandemic relief programs. The PRAC worked with the Department of Labor’s Inspector General to find 2.1 million mailing addresses that were used to claim both unemployment benefits and apply for Paycheck Protection Program loans – an indicator of fraud. 

The PRAC is committed to helping our 22 Inspectors General members use technology to conduct efficient and targeted oversight. We do this primarily in two ways.

  1. Our Data Sharing Working Group meets regularly and identifies data projects that cross agency and program boundaries.

  2. We’ve also built the Pandemic Analytics Center of Excellence – we’re calling it the PACE for short. The PACE shares data, tools, and talent to flag fraud in the $5 trillion worth of pandemic relief. For example, some tools will automate tasks that currently require manual review, saving our partners time and improving their ability to assess risk. The PACE also has 12 data scientists who directly support our members' existing data analytics efforts to detect fraud.

To learn more about the PACE and other data sharing efforts, sign up for our newsletter.

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