Labour sets out plans to harness AI to crack down on benefit fraud

Artificial intelligence would also be used to help the unemployed find jobs, the shadow work and pensions secretary said.

Labour sets out plans to harness AI to crack down on benefit fraud iStock

Artificial intelligence (AI) would be used to help the unemployed find jobs and crack down on benefit fraud under Labour plans.

Shadow work and pensions secretary Jonathan Ashworth will set out how AI could be used to offer personalised support for people looking for work, analysing CVs and suggesting jobs that match their skills.

In a speech in London, he will say Labour would use new technology to transform the way the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) operates.

As well as tackling the £8.3bn cost of fraud and error, it could also help vulnerable people access payments they are entitled to, he will say.

“For too long, the DWP has been offering an analogue service in an AI age,” Ashworth will say.

Labour highlighted France, where an automatic system analyses CVs and suggests extra skills a job seeker might have, and Belgium, where an app helps users visualise occupations they could consider, as examples of how technology could be used.

In his speech to the Social Market Foundation think tank, Ashworth will say: “Utilising powerful new AI tools will help Jobcentres offer more personalised, tailored support for jobseekers, helping them move into employment faster with a job that matches their skill set.

“AI in the hands of Jobcentre work coaches will better help jobseekers with CV analysis tools and interview practice preparation.”

He will also claim that better use of technology could help tackle fraud and reduce mistakes.

“The shocking amounts of fraud and error overseen and disgracefully considered acceptable by this Conservative government – over £8bn on most recent figures – can be confronted making more use of machine learning and pattern-detection techniques,” Ashworth will say.

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