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Interesting Public Sector Scam

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Not sure if this is true. However, I was speaking with a service engineer for a medical equipment firm who claims that a number of hospitals are falling for an curious scam. I've no real reason to believe he was making this up, but it sounds rather implausible, so was curious to know if anyone here had come across anything similar.

A hospital or other govt department is approached by a security firm specialising in access control, surveillance, etc. and they can even provide on-site security staff as needed. Apparently, the price is rock bottom, so this ranks them very highly under public sector procurement rules.

The problem comes with external contractors, field service engineers, sales reps, external trainers, etc. Unless the security provider has their name on file, together with an registration fee of £500 per person per year, then they aren't getting in to the building. So you get the situation where an engineer makes a visit to service a piece of equipment, and they are turned away by security, until the equipment vendor makes an emergency access payment to the security firm. (Like I said, it sounds a bit implausible; like why couldn't the member of staff expecting them, let them in the back door?)

The whole thing sounds like one of those nonsense e-mails, but it's exactly the sort of screwed up situation that I could see some public sector managers walking head-first into.

So, am I being too credulous even giving this a 2nd thought?

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When its not their money, they either don't care, or are in on the scam.

Its like those mickey mouse 'bomb detectors' Fine, the sellers are in prison now. But the onus is on the buyers to ensure they are buying what they think they are. Hundreds of millions wasted on golf ball finders. It would be funny if it wasn't likely lives were lost as a result. Incompetence doesn't even begin to cover it. They were sold as being able to detect dozens of things and did nothing. You would think such a scam isn't exactly hard to expose.

There should be hundreds of civil servants in prison buying the damn things too.

I wonder how much these ebola screening devices cost too - the ones that measure temperature remotely...just like they use for house insulating/heat loss monitoring.

Cost in Screwfix - £20. Add on a snazzy "SUPER EBOLA SCREENER" label...cost to taxpayer, who knows, £2000?!

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Sounds like nonsense. Why would you lock yourself into an unfair contract term like having your suppliers charged £500 a go to perform their essential tasks. If any hint of this sort of thing happened the company would be booted post haste.

Also hospitals aren't maximum security prisons, in fact they seem very porous security wise, how is security going to stop them?

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