Find out about our Information from Lenders scheme, where we work with consumer credit lenders to help fight fraud facilitated by intermediaries (i.e. credit brokers/dealers), and download reporting documents you can use to tell us about suspected fraud.
If you would like to tell us about suspected fraud at an intermediary, please:
- complete the Information from Lenders (IFL) reporting form: Consumer Credit, and;
- email it to [email protected]
If you wish to discuss general fraud by intermediaries and financial crime prevention at your firm, contact your FCA supervisor. Alternatively, please call the Firm Contact Centre on 0300 500 0597, which is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, and Thursday 9:45am to 5pm.
How IFL works
Using our IFL reporting form, consumer credit lenders can tell us about intermediaries that they suspect of being involved in fraud relating to a regulated financial product.
This scheme was launched for consumer credit lending in February 2019 and, in a similar way to that of the mortgage sector (which has been in place since 2006), we will be compiling information to report our findings via this page.
To give an indication of the influence that the IFL scheme has had in the mortgage sector, please see the corresponding Report mortgage fraud (lenders) webpage. We hope that, with the cooperation and transparency of lenders, we will be able to tackle fraud amongst intermediaries in a similar way.
The scheme is voluntary, but we expect you to help us win the fight against financial crime. The IFL scheme helps your firm and others in the industry fight fraud, reduces the chance of your firm being used to commit financial crime or facing a loss because of it.
For legal reasons, we may not always be able to provide you with details of investigations, but we will give you as much feedback as possible, and work with you to make submissions as strong as possible.
What we expect from lenders
You are responsible for making sure your business is not vulnerable to fraud – whether you are exposing it to unscrupulous customers or organised financial fraud gangs.
- should have robust and proportionate resources, systems and controls in place so you can identify, detect and prevent credit intermediary fraud;
- should make fraud detection and prevention a key part of your business;
- should have senior management functions that are responsible for managing fraud risks and overseeing, owning and regularly reviewing the control framework’s effectiveness.
Fraudsters and rogue intermediaries use their experience and knowledge of the market, differing lending criteria, and variants of the checks and balances in the underwriting process, to obtain credit from lenders. You must make sure your firm is not solely targeted because of easily exploitable flaws in your processes.
We hold lenders responsible for weak fraud controls and will pursue any poor systems and controls by supervising more intensively and using enforcement action where appropriate.
Help for lenders considering making IFL referrals
Who should be submitted as IFL subjects?
The IFL process is intended for lenders to submit information on intermediaries, credit brokers, or dealers that have, or are suspected to have, acted fraudulently.
What level of information does the FCA expect to receive?
It would be helpful for us to receive fully investigated cases, in which the complicity of the intermediary in the fraud has been proved. However, we recognise it can be difficult for lenders to complete a detailed investigation in every case.
Is it mandatory to inform the subject that the FCA have been informed about a panel removal?
While a lender is not obliged to tell the broker that they have informed us of reports made, brokers should already be aware that lenders have this responsibility under Principle 11. It may also smooth the process if we can address issues directly with brokers.
Does the FCA report concerns to external bodies?
While we have communication channels in place with organisations such as HMRC, Action Fraud and Trading Standards, the expectation is that if lenders deem intelligence serious enough to report to these bodies, it should be reported to the relevant body as well as the FCA.