EXCLUSIVE – The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is using data collected by a not-for-profit social research organisation to compare to its own records so as to snoop on benefit claimants. Claimants have raised fears that they will be targeted for giving poor responses to the survey. The DWP themselves refused to answer any questions about its partnership with the company.
NatCen Social Research is an independent not-for-profit social research organisation that undertakes research for a range of government bodies including the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
The organisation is contracted to deliver the Family Resources Survey (FRS) on behalf of DWP and Office for National Statistics (ONS).
According to the government website, the Family Resources Survey (FRS) is;
“An annual report that provides facts and figures about the incomes and living circumstances of households and families in the UK.”
The Family Resources Survey (FRS) is a continuous household survey published annually provide statistics on a household and individuals;
- Savings & Income from all sources
- Housing status
- Any caring needs and responsibilities
- Pension participation
I became aware of NatCen Research after being contacted by several people who claimed they’d been harassed by the company’s researchers. They also raised fears that the DWP would be using their responses to snoop on them.
- Source: DWP using research data to snoop on claimants
- Universal Credit Sufferer