The state-run British Business Bank (BBB) has hired PwC to investigate possible fraud cases in its Covid-19 business loan program.
The loan program was set up to help smaller businesses affected by the coronavirus.
According to the website Consultancy.co.uk, BBB has contacted PwC to investigate possible fraud cases after previously working with the Big Four firm and its competitors Deloitte and KPMG.
A British Business Bank spokesman said: “We recently appointed PwC as a consultant to provide further insight into any fraud or attempted fraud, to identify where additional resources are needed and to enable additional fraud prevention measures.”
In a letter to the PAC in October, British Business Bank CEO Catherine Lewis La Torre said 26,933 fraudulent loan applications valued at £ 1.1 billion had been detected at the time.
BBB is an economic development bank owned but operated independently by the UK Government.
It aims to increase the supply of finance to smaller businesses where it believes the markets are not working well.
There have been reports of fraud throughout the pandemic. In 2020, around 33,000 reports of suspicious activity related to the Covid-19 pandemic were filed, suggesting that government programs designed to help people and businesses through the pandemic can be abused.
Elsewhere, HMRC stated that between 5 and 10 percent of the $ 39 billion total
PwC has been asked to comment.