New guide published to help charities avoid Covid-related scams

Melanie May | 16 December 2020 | News

A new guide comes out today (16 December) to help charities protect themselves from falling victim to Covid-related fraud.
The helpsheet highlights the steps charities should take to avoid being scammed, and has been created by The Fraud Advisory Panel, Cancer Research UK, the Charity Commission for England and Wales, Charity Finance Group, the National Cyber Security Centre and Small Charities Coalition.
It includes an explanation of different types of fraud charities should look out for, including procurement fraud, which could see procurement processes manipulated and goods and services provided that are shoddy, overpriced or which never arrive, and financial statement fraud where struggling organisations may be tempted to present a facade of solvency by fiddling the books.
It also looks at the pressures and opportunities that can lead to fraud, and includes a checklist for charities to help them protect themselves, and a list of useful resources.

David Clarke, Chair of the Fraud Advisory Panel, said:

“Changes to working practices because of the pandemic have created new opportunities for fraudsters and cybercriminals to exploit. Even as circumstances change, the main way for charities to stay safe is to get the basics right. This helpsheet provides vital information on what to look out for and how to protect your charity.”

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Alan Bryce, Head of Counter Fraud and Cybercrime at the Charity Commission for England and Wales, added:

“The problem of fraud against charities is not going away. If anything, the pandemic has made the threat even greater. This is why our helpsheet is a must read for anybody who wants to understand the fraud threats charities now face and more importantly, how to do something about them.”