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Today, SAS, the world's largest privately owned software company, is bringing together global experts from the financial, public services, telecommunications and information technology industries to discuss the increasing problem of fraud. The Rt. Hon Frank Field MP will open up discussion on the future of fraud and how technology can combat fraud at the Fraud Detection and Prevention Leadership Forum being held at the Landmark Hotel, Marylebone.

In his keynote speech, the Rt. Hon. Frank Field MP will describe how the Government is committed to fighting fraud with its Joined-up Fraudbusting initiative. This is being followed by presentations from industry leaders and an open panel session.

Reinforcing the government's joined up message is Jim Gee, director of Counter Fraud Services, Department of Health. He will be talking about how this integrated approach aims to reduce the cost of fraud to the NHS, for which the resulting losses are currently being calculated to a high degree of accuracy. Jim Gee explains: "Our mission at the Counter Fraud Service is to reduce fraud to an absolute minimum and hold it at that minimum to free up resources to improve patient care."

In the United States, the health sector for example, has turned to statistical analysis to fight fraud. Dr. Terry Allen, research analyst at the Utah Bureau of Medical Fraud will describe how SAS helped to uncover doctors who were illegally prescribing heroin-type drugs to already addicted patients.

The use of data analysis software has also helped in the fight against credit card fraud. According to Lynne Drewer, senior fraud analyst, Lloyds TSB, the leading UK based financial services group, also speaking at the event, "By using data mining software, including SAS' Enterprise Miner, Lloyds TSB have identified and potentially prevented considerable amounts of annual fraudulent activity."

The Butler Group confirms this view in a research paper on Supply Side Commerce. It states that, 'the covert nature of fraud makes it a difficult crime to detect and deal with, but the use of data mining techniques simplifies this process considerably. An ideal example is presented by the SAS Fraud solution'. (Butler Group - Research Paper - Supply Side Commerce, February 2001)

Talking more generally about the types of fraud in the banking sector is Tony Thomas MICM, Head of Fraud Prevention at Barclays Bank PLC. He estimates: "fraudsters account for a staggering £2 billion a year in attempted fraud in a year in the banking sector. Current problems include corporate, forgery and counterfeit fraud. In the future we need to concentrate our efforts on warehousing data and using analysis tools to identify fraudsters"

According to figures released by the Home Office, Internet crime rose by more than 20% last year. Jack Wraith, chief executive of the Telecommunications United Kingdom Fraud Forum (TUFF) looks at how digital networks and cable and Internet access are opening up new opportunities for fraud in telecommunications. He foresees "that the majority of fraud problems the industry will be required to manage in five years time have not yet even begun to emerge."

Peter Dorrington, UK Business Solutions marketing manager at SAS concurs: "The e-channel has made it much easier for criminals to gain access to business systems. We have seen that the introduction of new market channels brings other opportunities for fraudsters."

Indeed, research that SAS commissioned into Internet fraud late last year found that 84% of organisations interviewed felt the Internet is not secure yet many admitted they would continue to invest in e-business despite the risk.

Peter Dorrington added, "Fraud has become a major issue for today's businesses. This Forum will provide a platform to increase awareness about fraud and the means to both prevent and detect fraud to help organisations stop fraudsters in their tracks!"

About SAS

SAS is the world leader in e-intelligence software and services, enabling its customers to turn raw data - including the vast quantity generated by e-business - into usable knowledge. Software from SAS, the world's largest privately held software company, is used at more than 33,000 business, government and university sites in 110 countries. SAS' 1999 revenues totalled $1.02 billion.

For further information, to obtain a press pass to the event or to receive the full 2000 fraud survey, commissioned by SAS, please contact the SAS press office on: tel: +44(0)20 7544 3202 fax:+44 (0)20 7240 1910 or e-mail saspressoffice@webergroup.co.uk


Please visit SAS' Web site: http://www.sas.com/uk

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