Benefits system wide open to error and fraud, says audit office

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The UK's benefits system is too complicated and vulnerable to high levels of error and fraud, according to a National Audit Office report.

About 30 million people in the UK receive at least one benefit or a pension and the report 'Dealing with the Complexity of the Benefits System' says that years of changes in legislation has left the system overly complex.

It estimates that last year around 2.6 billion was lost through a combination of fraud and human error.

The report said: "There is almost universal agreement that complexity exists and is perceived as a problem, and in the National Audit Office's opinion, it is perhaps one of the most important issues impacting on the performance of the department."

Sir John Bourn, head of the NAO, added: "There is a balance to be struck between a system w...

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