New Counter Fraud Provider


The Trust has changed the firm that provides our counter fraud service with effect from 1 April 2020 and with that comes a change in Local Counter Fraud Specialist.

The incoming Counter Fraud Specialist is now Gareth Robins who works for Grant Thornton UK LLP.

Gareth can be contacted by phone or email by / 0121 232 8781 when movement restrictions are lifted, Gareth will be available, to provide counter fraud updates at your team or locality meetings.

Gareth is available to help with any concerns or issues you may wish to report during this period of disrupted working. It is important now, more than ever, that we remain vigilant, don’t let our guard down and lock down anything that may be vulnerable. Most importantly, we don’t allow ourselves or our NHS to fall victim to fraudulent activity.

Times of crisis are, unfortunately, moments when organisations and people are most distracted or impressionable. We have seen this with the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) which is continuing to cause worldwide disruption providing fraudsters with the opportunity to exploit and steal.

The Covid-19 Fraud Watch Group* latest identified fraud risks:-


  • Increase in whistleblowing reports (esp. employee conduct and health and safety)
  • Data breaches relating to remote working/customer information
  • Fraudsters offering cleaning services to protect from COVID-19
  • Pension liberation fraud
  • Financial investment fraud
  • Increase in grant applications from fake businesses

Fraudulent websites

  • Free of charge DBS checks subject to a ‘low cost’ admin fee
  • Access to ‘free’ COVID-19 webinars subject to providing personal/administrator details

Phishing emails

  • Targeting parents/carers offering free school meals for their children subject to providing their bank details
  • Targeting professional firms from the ‘Commonwealth Unit’ asking for an advance fee of £2500 to become the sole practitioner on a new ‘Parliament Hub App’
  • Offering ‘free’ help in order to obtain system access (e.g. website development)
  • Advising that the recipient’s mailbox is full but that they can increase their storage space free of charge by clicking on the link provided

Anticipated and/or emerging issues

  • Trusts targeted by ransomware because of vulnerabilities in their VPN and network gateway devices
  • Donation pages automatically set up for businesses without their knowledge or consent
  • South Africa has seen an increase in courier fraud with fraudsters claiming that all money is contaminated with the coronavirus and they will collect it
  • Private Branch Exchange (PBX) fraud where fraudsters hack the telephone system to make expensive calls
  • Fake recruitment agencies offering to provide temporary workers

* With thanks to the Fraud Advisory Panel, Covid-19 Fraud Watch Group which consists of cross-sector and industry members including the Cabinet Office and City of London Police.

If you have any concerns or suspicions about fraud taking place you can contact Gareth on the contact details provided or you can report your concerns to the national fraud and corruption reporting line on 0800 028 60 40 or at

Published 21st April 2020

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