Decrease fraud, reduce costs and make better decisions

28th October 2021

Leveraging digital technology to decrease fraud risk, whilst reducing costs, and making better decisions.

  • New Civica partnership with GBG will enable Pension providers to make best use of data to protect members interests, whilst streamlining processes. 
  • In conversation with Civica Pensions, Managing Director, Chris Jones, and GBG Director for Wealth, Life & Pensions, Spencer Lynch, they discuss some of the benefits digital technologies provide in reducing risk in the pension sector.
  • Chief among these is the reliance upon traditional paper-based interactions, making the transition to digital ‘a big step’. 
  • Spencer and Chris also highlight the importance of member experience, something that all funds and trustees hold close to their hearts.

Most companies are undergoing a period of digital transition, but this process is far from a simple one. By understanding the barriers to this transformation, businesses can approach these challenges in a pragmatic, risk-based way, enabling them to easily identify the areas that technology can enhance. Often in regulated industries we see the main motivation for the deployment of cutting-edge technology as being the mitigation of fraud risk. Chris Jones from Civica flags, whilst that’s a significant underlying driver, there’s other benefits that the adoption of this technology provides that may not be initially apparent, “their member experience, significant reduction in operational costs and risk of reputational damage”.

“The operational cost from having to return documents that have been posted in can quickly reach 6 figures” – especially when returning sensitive documents like marriage certificates, birth certificates and sadly even death certificates. The risk of those documents being lost in the post, is one that should not be overlooked.

Reducing risk with technology

Where the technology can really help, is enabling members to submit documents digitally within seconds and performing extensive integrity checks, quickly and silently. Spencer Lynch from GBG explains how technology can enable us to challenge BAU processes, transform them and significantly reduce the risk associated with common life ‘events,’ such as name changes from marriage and/or divorce. Spencer added “if we make it easy for members to interact with their funds, the natural result will be that user adoption will increase”. Chris Jones agrees “Technology provides us an ability to engage members in keeping their data up to date and current”. This engagement is key in the industry, especially when we start looking ahead to The Pensions Dashboard.

If we want to know where a member lives – ask the member. If we want to know where a member has worked, to enable the repatriation of lost assets and/or allowing administrators to identify potential duplicate records across their estate – ask the member. Spencer Lynch reaffirms, “an engaged membership happens when confidence in the members identity is high, this solves many of our underlying industry challenges”.


From a fraud perspective, our industry is exposed to the risk associated with typical ID&V processes more than others. That’s the anti-impersonation part. In many markets we see this anti-impersonation piece being overcome with what’s widely referred to as a KBA (knowledge-based authentication), questions only the member should know the answer to. The general premise of this is good, but in our industry, it’s more susceptible to compromise. Previous relationships compound the issue. But by leveraging sophisticated identity verification checks, that use biometric technology and quality data, organisations can be confident that they know the identity of the person and any risks associated. By better understanding the identity of the person it’s easier to prevent fraud, while making it easier to quickly let the ‘good’ people in. Civica continues to take advantage of advances in cyber-security to develop cutting-edge, sophisticated document checks and identity services that allow funds to assure members that trustworthy security controls are in place - guaranteeing the protection of pension transactions.

#TrustedPartner - giving you the assurance that you and your members need.

Civica provides pensions administration software and consultancy services across the private and public sector including 44% of Local Government Pension Schemes in England and Wales. Their latest contracts with Southwark Council and Local Pension Partnership Authority builds on strong momentum and growth in the sector. Civica's new inspiring content series, Perspectives* explores how emerging technologies can help us build more innovative public services for today, and tomorrow.

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