Scrap plans to scan accounts of benefit claimants or risk new scandal, MPs told

1 month ago 22

Campaigners say ‘fully automated’ approach risks repeat of Post Office Horizon scandal

Plans for automated surveillance of millions of bank accounts to catch welfare cheats should be scrapped, campaigners have said, warning the approach risks a repeat of the Post Office Horizon scandal.

The Department for Work and Pensions is seeking new powers to require banks to trawl the accounts of millions of people who receive benefits in an effort to cut the £8bn currently lost annually to welfare fraud. The plan is close to being passed into law by parliament and will be “fully automated”, the government said. It is likely to use artificial intelligence to flag activity considered suspicious by the DWP.

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