Reporting a Fraud

The SEUPB is committed to combating fraud and corruption and has adopted a proactive, structured and targeted approach to address all four aspects of the fraud cycle - Prevention, Detection, Corrections and Prosecution.

What is fraud?

The term ‘Fraud’ is used to describe such acts as deception, bribery, forgery, extortion, corruption, theft, conspiracy, embezzlement, misappropriation, false representation, concealment of material facts and collusion.

The EU Treaty defines fraud, in respect of expenditure, as an intentional act or omission related to:

  • The use or presentation of false, incorrect or incomplete statements or documents, which has as its effect the misappropriation or wrongful retention of funds from the EU;
  • Non-disclosure of information in violation of a specific obligation, with the same effect; or
  • The misapplication of such funds for purposes other than those for which they were originally granted.

Something isn’t right, but I’m not sure if it is fraud – should I still report it?

If you feel that something isn’t right we encourage you to report it. The SEUPB will make a decision on whether the case needs to be taken further without any further action from you. 

You may find it helpful to consider the fraud indicators in Appendix I of the SEUPB Fraud and Whistleblowing Policy. This will give some idea about the types of practices that may indicate something is not right.

How do I report suspected fraud?

Suspected fraud can be reported online via the form below.

Should I report it to anyone else?

The SEUPB will contact the accountable government department as a matter of course when a suspected fraud is reported. If appropriate, the SEUPB will also contact the Police Service of Northern Ireland and / or An Garda Siochana and / or Police Scotland.

You are free to contact other bodies, regulators and funders if you wish to do so.

What information do you need?

Please outline to us the nature of your suspicions, providing any background information you feel is relevant.

Please support your suspicions with as much documentary evidence as you can; for example, copies of email correspondence or copies of documents relating to the suspected fraud.

What if I have no evidence to back up my suspicions?

Even if you have no documentation to substantiate the suspected fraud, if you have genuine concerns, the SEUPB is keen to hear from you.

I work there / I am known by the organisation. Will anyone find out I have reported this?

The SEUPB will do its utmost to protect an individual’s identity if they raise a concern and do not want their name to be disclosed. It must be appreciated however that the investigation process may lead to disclosure of the individual’s identity. Please be assured that the SEUPB will not share your initial concern with any other individual or organisation unless required to do so by law.

Any information you send to the SEUPB regarding suspected fraud will be treated confidentially. When a suspected fraud is reported to us we save your initial concern in our records, but your name will not be used in any documents after that.

All documents relating to fraud have restricted access within the SEUPB, so only a very limited number of professionals will have access to your report.

If you wish, you can raise your concerns anonymously with us. Concerns expressed in this way are much less powerful but they will be considered at the discretion of the SEUPB.

If you are an employee of the organisation you have a concern about, you may wish to view advice and guidance about whistleblowing on the NI Direct website, and the Public Concern at Work website

The Northern Ireland Audit Office also has a Good Practice Guide on for workers and employers in the Public Sector, which you may find useful.

What happens next?

The SEUPB will review the information and consider the next course of action.

We may decide to investigate activity of the project, inspect claims made by the project, or conduct a spot-check visit. 

It may be necessary to inform government departments of your concern. Depending on the outcome of any investigation that takes place, SEUPB may also report investigation findings to the PSNI or An Garda Síochána.

We may also decide that it is not a proportionate response to take any action on receipt of your report.

Will you contact me about the suspected fraud?

If you have provided contact details, we will acknowledge receipt of your correspondence, unless the complaint is not considered to be a genuine concern.

We may also contact you to clarify the information you have provided. If you do not wish to be contacted please tell us this when making your report.

Other than that, we will not normally need to contact you.

Will SEUPB let me know the findings of any investigation?

No. The SEUPB will not provide information on how (if at all) it will use the information you provide.

The SEUPB will not discuss the findings of any investigation or respond to any requests for updates or progress reports following receipt of a suspected fraud report.

What if my suspicions are wrong?

If an allegation is made in good faith but is not confirmed by an investigation, no action will be taken against the individual responsible for making the allegation.

Whistleblowing Policy

About the concern

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Does your concern relate to an SEUPB-funded project?

About you

Can we contact you?

Additional comments

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Allowed types: txt, rtf, pdf, doc, docx, odt.

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