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Welfare crackdown nets $4.5m a day

AAP logoAAP 4/12/2016

The federal government is clawing back $4.5 million in overpaid Centrelink payments every day thanks to a new computer system.

That's a stark difference to the $295,000 per day it had been getting in the past.

And it's a huge leap from the 20,000 times a year it would intervene on a compliance issue - today that's 20,000 a week.

It's hoped over time the new online compliance system, which kicked off in July, will help the government gain $4 billion.

It matches people's records to see if they are declaring their income correctly by linking a welfare recipient's details with the tax office.

Staff used to manually check customer records and followed up with letters or phone calls on compliance notices.

That's all automated now, with notices computer generated.

Human Services Minister Alan Tudge said the system identifies people who've made a genuine mistake while also detecting fraudsters.

"Our aim is to ensure that people get what they are entitled to -- no more and no less," he said.

"And to crack down hard when people deliberately defraud the system."

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