Omega have just completed a successful fraud operation involving some interesting methods primarily using false driving licences to obtain product and finance.
It is timely to highlight method and trends and provide guidelines as to how this type of offending can be prevented or decreased.
This case was concerning as it showed how easy it is to re-produce a false driving licence of excellent quality.
The fraud was committed by a motivated and sophisticated group of offenders.
The main offender obtained already stolen driving licences and was able to successfully create new driving licences using the stolen identity information but adding in false photographs of his own team of offenders. We identified at least two separate templates used so they had some level of flexibility in what they were able to re-produce.
We identified at least nine offenders committing over 20 offences. All offenders using seemingly genuine identifications but with their own photograph embossed on the false driving licences.
This is of particular concern given that most retailers in particular use driving licences as a genuine form of trusted identification.
In addition to using false driving licences the offenders had a variety of false secondary forms of identification ‘proving’ where they lived.
By the clever use of our intelligence analysis tools Omega were able to cross reference and connect every offender and offence forming an illustrative web of criminal activity.
Although difficult to detect, processes can be put in place to provide more diligence in the initial application:
- Staff members to be diligent in screening driving licences and corresponding documentation.
- Enhanced staff training.
- Conducting independent checks to verify identity and current home address.
- Co-operation between companies, organisations and law enforcement and investigative experts to understand and disseminate latest Fraud trends.
In all the above cases the home address provided was false.
Companies can enhance their detection methods by some simple steps:
- Ensuring CCTV is up to date.
- The CCTV is of sufficient quality that it can provide reasonable identity photographs on persons and vehicles.
- The CCTV is positioned in the correct locations.
- The CCTV has sufficient back-up; the recommendation is at least one calendar month.
Where there are incidents of fraud, investigate promptly so that all available evidence is captured.
If you are curious as to why these offenders would be so blasé in committing such offences then the answer is because they don’t care, some are under the influence of drugs mainly ‘P’ and their sole motivation is to steal to fund their drug habit. So the fear of capture is not a deterrent.
For more detailed information on this particular “MO” or advice on FRAUD – SECURITY PREVENTION – CCTV or you have an existing matter you wish to discuss please do not hesitate to contact Phil Jones, Omega Investigations, 021616651.