Report on steps taken to prevent fraud in the public-sector

17-12-2020
Report

Report no. 7/2020

Fraud committed internally by individuals employed in the public sector covers a wide spectrum of activities, including abusing public funds for private purchases or transferring money into private accounts. 

The purpose of the study is to assess whether the business processes and internal con-trols established in the ministries are appropriate to mitigate the risk of fraud committed by public-sector employees. The report answers the following questions: 

  • Did the ministries in 2019 have an appropriate management framework in place for mitigating the risk of grant, procurement and payroll fraud committed by public-sector employees?
  • Did the ministries have satisfactory system support for separation of duties in shared government IT-systems in 2019?
  • Had the ministries in 2019 in practice established appropriate internal controls to mitigate the risk of procurement and payroll fraud committed by public-sector employees?
  • Did the ministries’ grant systems have appropriate,  IT-supported  controls in 2019? 

It is Rigsrevisionen’s assessment that, overall, the business processes and internal controls set up by the ministries in order to mitigate the risk of fraud committed by public-sector employees were not satisfactory in 2019. Rigsrevisionen has not detected any specific incidents of grant, procurement or payroll fraud, but has noted weaknesses in controls that would have made it possible for public-sector employees to commit fraud without being detected. The consequence of Rigsrevisionen’s findings is that it would have been possible for employees in the public sector to authorise illegal payments in connection with the administration of grants, procurement and payroll in 2019 – and in principle – several years back. 

Rigsrevisionen initiated the study in April 2020 at the request of the Danish Public Accounts Committee.

Read the 1st chapter of the report (PDF)