According to the BBC, there have only been two instances of TV Licensing goon fraud reported by Capita in the last five years.
The BBC, which is the statutory Licensing Authority, contracts a number of private companies to do its TV Licensing dirty work. On top of that shitty pile is Capita Business Services Ltd, which currently holds the lucrative TV Licensing operations contract. Under the terms of its BBC contract, Capita is responsible for the majority of TV licence administration and enforcement work. This includes visiting unlicensed properties, prosecuting alleged TV licence evaders and processing TV licence payments.
Using the Freedom of Information Act 2000, we asked the BBC to provide the number of times Capita had reported instances of employee fraud to it since 2010. Capita is contractually obliged to provide that information to the BBC immediately an instance of fraud arises.
The BBC said that Capita had reported the following instances of employee fraud:
- In 2011 an enquiry officer (their term for door-knocking goon) failed to complete a TVL178 Record of Interview form in accordance with Codes of Practice and TV Licensing Field guidelines.
- In 2014 a contact centre agent processed inflated payments from customers - e.g. advising a customer that a certain amount had been debited from their card, but actually processing a greater amount.
That was it. How bizarre.
Only two instances of fraud in the past five years? There can't be a week goes by where someone doesn't send us allegations of TV Licensing goon fraudulent behaviour, so how come the BBC isn't hearing the same? Or is the BBC simply being selective about what it hears, in the similar manner to the way rumours about Jimmy Savile were dismissed?
The BBC wishes to make the following statement: "As can be seen by the very low numbers of fraudulent instances reported here (two over the course of a five-plus year period), Capita's fraud controls are very effective at picking up fraudulent behaviour. Both of these instances were spotted by Capita and the police contacted."
Of course the fact that Capita has reported only two instances of fraud to the BBC doesn't necessarily mean that only two instances of fraud have occurred. We are reminded of a couple of occasions where Capita "forgot" to mention important matters to the BBC (see here and here). Had we not raised those matters on our blog, we doubt the BBC would ever have found out about them.
Could it be, perhaps, that not every instance of TV Licensing goon fraud is being reported to the BBC?
Just a thought.
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