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European Anti-Fraud Office
Report fraud

Union Anti-Fraud Programme - IMS component

What are the main activities?

To protect the financial interests of the European Union (EU), EU legislation (see below) requires Member States and countries benefiting from pre-accession assistance to report to the Commission irregularities (including suspected and established fraud), they have detected in areas where the EU provides financial support. 

To make it easier to report irregularities, a dedicated electronic system has been developed and put at the disposal of Member States and beneficiary countries: the Irregularity Management System (IMS). The IMS is operated under the Anti-Fraud Information System (AFIS) and is used by 35 countries.

Member States, candidate countries, and other non-EU countries have set up a hierarchical reporting structure with different levels of responsibility. Around 700 reporting organisations with more than 3 000 IMS users are responsible for the timely reporting of irregularities. 

The reporting workflow features different hierarchical levels and different roles within the same level to ensure that several quality checks are performed before the reports are sent to the Commission.

Reporting authorities have one or more of the areas of responsibility set out in the table below.

Area of responsibilityFund
AgricultureEuropean Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF), European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), European Agricultural Guarantee and Guidance Fund – Guidance Section (GUID)
AsylumAsylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF), Internal Security Fund (ISF)
CohesionCohesion Fund (CF), European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF), European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), European Social Fund (ESF), Youth Employment Initiative (YEI)
FisheriesEuropean Fisheries Fund (EFF), European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), Financial Instrument on Fisheries Guidance (FIFG)
Most deprivedFund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD)
NeighbourhoodCross-border Cooperation – European Neighbourhood Policy (CBC-ENP)
Pre-accessionCARDS, CBC-IPA, HRD, IPARD, ISPA, PHARE, REGD, SAPARD, TAIB, TF, TIPAA
RRFRecovery and Resilience Facility (RRF)

Reporting authorities provide information on:

  • who committed the irregularity/fraud (persons involved)
  • the support measure, such as the fund, programme, project, and budget line
  • the financial impact (expenditure and irregular/fraudulent amount)
  • how the irregularity/fraud was committed
  • when the irregularity/fraud was committed
  • where the irregularity/fraud was committed
  • the method of detection of the irregularity/fraud
  • administrative, judicial or penal follow-up
  • sanctions imposed

Legal basis

The reporting of irregularities and the use of the IMS are provided for in the legal acts set out in the table below.

CompetenceFundsRegulations
AgricultureEAGF, EAFRD, GUID1306/20132015/19712015/1975
AsylumAMIF, ISF514/20142015/1973 2015/1977
CohesionCF, EGF, ERDF, ESF, YEI1303/20132015/19702015/1974
FisheriesEFF, EMFF, FIFG1303/20132015/19702015/1974
Most deprivedFEAD223/20142015/19722015/1976
NeighbourhoodCBC-ENP232/2014236/2014234/2014
Pre-accessionsCARDS, CBC-IPA, HRD, IPARD, ISPA, PHARE, REGD, SAPARD, TAIB, TF, TIPAA231/2014236/2014

447/2014

Recovery and Resilience FacilityRRF

2021/241

  

What does the annual work programme involve?

The annual work programme has a budget of EUR 929 000. It will be dedicated to:

  • maintenance and IT development;
  • studies.

Maintenance and development

The major developments for 2021 are set out in the bullet points below.

  • RRF: the RRF will be added to the IMS to make it possible to use the IMS for reporting RRF irregularities.
  • B2B: a feature is being developed to upload cases of irregularities to the IMS directly from a national database (without manual processing of data in the IMS).
  • IMS country officers: additional rights are being developed.
  • IMS-statistics: a feature is being developed to make it possible to upload reports created by the business owner.

The complete list of all prioritised features can be found on the AFIS Library (ALIB).

For this activity, the total indicative available budget is EUR 829 000.

Studies

The IMS is based on software from 2014 and is approaching the end of its lifetime. The upcoming challenges of the new multiannual financial framework and the changing needs of users make it necessary to procure a study on the future development of IMS. This study will determine future requirements based on the needs and wishes of IMS users.

For this activity, the total indicative available budget is EUR 150 000.