Protected Online Filing (PROOF)
There's a misconception that it's difficult to commit corporate identity theft. However, this isn't the case. All that needs to happen is a paper form being filled out fraudulently.
New directors can be appointed, and current directors can be resigned, even the registered office can be changed.
As concerning as this is, the Companies House Protected Online Filing (PROOF) scheme can help.
What is PROOF?
PROOF is a free Companies House scheme that protects limited companies by limiting the number of changes that can be filed for a company using certain paper forms, with the majority of changes being made online with your company's authentication code.
Enrolling on the PROOF scheme will ensure that the following procedures can only be made electronically.
- Change of Registered Office Address
- Changes to the company's officers (appointments, resignations and change of particulars)
- Filing of the confirmation statement
Why do I need to be concerned about corporate identity theft?
According to the latest cifas Fraudscape Report, 2022 saw the highest-ever levels of identity fraud cases, with 277,234 cases reported, up 23% compared to 2021.
If you suspect any of the following changes have been made fraudulently, you are advised to contact Companies House immediately.
- A registered office has been changed without the officers' knowledge or approval.
- An officer has been:
- The name of a company has been changed without consent.
- A company is using an address as their registered office without consent.
If you suspect any of the above, you should report the matter to Action Fraud using their 24/7 online reporting service.
You can register for PROOF directly from the Companies House WebFiling portal. If you incorporated your company with us, we can do this for you if you get in touch.
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