The North East Fraud Forum

The North East Fraud Forum was launched at St James’ Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, in March 2003. It was and continues to be innovative in its ability to bring both public and private organisations together within a single framework with common aims to prevent and combat fraud whilst promoting awareness of potential dangers.

The creation of the NEFF was described at the time as visionary in its anticipation of what is now national policy regarding the fight against fraud. The fraud review of 2006 made the following reference:

“The public/private partnership approach is crucial…. there are already successful regional initiatives, such as the North East Fraud Forum that brings together public and private agencies to cooperate to alert consumers and business to the fraud risk and help them deal with it. A coordinated national approach is now needed.”

It is against this continued concern surrounding fraudulent activity that the NEFF board of management will continue on its strategic objectives. In doing so the NEFF will continue to:

‘Bring the public and private sectors together to prevent and combat fraud by raising awareness.’

In light of the NFA research the uniqueness of this approach should not be underestimated. The NEFF will continue to use this partnership approach by promoting the north east as a centre of excellence in the detection and prevention of fraud related crime within the public and private sectors. We will continue to address the skills gap in the area of the understanding and investigation of fraud and providing networking opportunities for members to share best practice.

Governance

The North East Fraud Forum is a constituted organisation which is governed by a management committee that is overseen by the Board of Directors. One of whom is elected as chair. The management board meets bi-monthly where the strategic direction is agreed and local decisions are taken to ensure that the NEFF continues to operate within the constraints of the constitution.

Alan Brown NEFF Chairman

Alan Brown – NEFF Chair

Membership

Membership contributions are critical for the continuation of the NEFF progression and the availability of individual and corporate memberships have been an integral part of maintaining the NEFF finances in a period of national financial difficulty. Whilst the NEFF does not seek to accumulate large financial reserves the organisations running costs are at present being met within the current structure. It is inevitable as the NEFF continues to grow that costs will rise however it is the express intention of the management board to ensure that prudent fiscal governance is practiced in order that the NEFF operates within strict financial parameters.

Our History

The North East Fraud Forum (NEFF) was launched at St. James Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, in March 2003 and since that time has held 8 conferences, 20 masterclasses and three six day training courses, and several training programmes designed to meet individual organisations specific requirements.  Over 2500 delegates attended these events and the membership now stands at over 200 organisations.  The NEFF is a not for profit organisation and the ideology of the NEFF is set out in the aim below:

Aim of the project

The culture of British business has a tendency to inhibit proper fraud prevention.  The aim of the NEFF is to promote fraud awareness and successful fraud prevention strategies across both public and private sector regions, by creating a culture of transparency with better flows of information and open discussion aimed at promoting more widespread understanding and better sharing of ideas.

The NEFF web site was created allowing access to anyone wishing to be appraised of current fraud trends and other invaluable information.

Achievements

  • Reduction of fraud-oriented crime in the region highlighted by a 32% decrease in business crime.
  • Improved partnership working and better information sharing.
  • Provision of best practice service to the region and throughout the country.
  • Reduction of fraud-oriented crime sustained in 2004/5/6.
  • Production of a NEFF 10-point plan to combat economic crime.
  • Production of a NEFF 10-point plan to combat identity theft.
  • The introduction of a very successful training programme.
  • Development of 1-day bespoke training courses delivered here in the North East and across the country.
  • Continued improvement of partnership working and information sharing.
  • Establishment of other Fraud Forums countrywide based on the NEFF formula.
  • Produced four training DVD’s.
  • Continued delivery of Conferences, Masterclasses and Seminars to our members and non-members alike.