Watching the episode on The Tube the other night (still available on BBC Iplayer UK only though), which concentrated on the profit protection team from London Underground network, a number of thoughts struck me.

The profit protection team targeted the worst offenders which makes sense to a degree but would targeting lots of small occasional offenders yielded more revenue or fines?

It seemed like the reaction of staff to fraud was to call the profit protection team rather than owning the problem themselves. This is the challenge of having a specific fraud team others may now feel that this is not their problem. Like no one is going to start marketing new fares on their own, so too it seemed fraud was a problem for a specific team which seemed like a miss.

I have been using the underground for two years and have never been checked and the attitude of those caught was a bit, well its like OK I have been caught this time, but not the previous 30 times so at £4.40 a journey then I am still ahead, none of those caught seemed like they were going to change their behaviour in the future which is the ultimate aim of profit protection surely, in that sense their strategy seemed ineffective.

London Underground loses £20m a year through fraud and fare evasion, the revenue department were there to define strategy to reduce it. Yet the revenue team didn't seem to have scope to be able to introduce new technology to prevent future fraud which seemed like a miss.

The other issues they dealt with were, counterfeit tickets and
persistent offenders. Its worth a watch to see some of the abuse the profit protection field members suffered. A big fraud problem to deal with, but perhaps some new thinking in strategy is required?

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