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Companies house fails to background check company names

Updated: Apr 28, 2022

An investigation by Sheffield University Accounting Professor and Labour peer Prem Sikka suggests that Companies House, the United Kingdom's registrar of companies, should be doing more to investigate and background check companies who give unusual names such as Adolf Tooth Fair Hitler and Judas Superadio Iskariot.

Who is Companies House?

Companies House is a division of the Department for Business, Skills, and Innovation. It regulates and incorporates limited liability partnerships and limited businesses in the United Kingdom.

One of Companies House's key roles is to inspect and maintain all information about limited liability partnerships and limited enterprises. The information displayed on the company registration can be accessed online by the general public as well as all businesses. The United Kingdom is the first country to establish a highly open and transparent company information register, with all electronic data freely available. As a result, the general public can simply monitor and inspect every organisation doing business in the United Kingdom's ownership, acts, and dependability.

Investigation Findings

Prem Sikka explains that fresh HMRC numbers show that £35 billion in tax went uncollected last year out of a total of £647 billion due. Anyone may now form a business for as little as £12 and use the information to register a bank account and have access to the international banking system. These companies can use any name they wish; according to an Italian journalist, they might even register a company at 10 Downing Street in the name of a Mafia lord.

An screen shot from Companies House

While there is no suggestion of any wrongdoing by this firm, Lord Sikka says that companies should undergo the same checks individuals need to obtain credit cards and passports. And directors listed should provide National Insurance numbers to establish their identity. He added: “Lots of databases are available to make these simple checks”.

Lord Sikka also demanded that the Tories carry out the reforms of Companies House they have been promising since 2010. He said: “Companies House should be a vital cog in the regulatory machinery for combating money laundering.”

Why is background checking so important?

Background checks rely on a range of data sources, each of which has varying degrees of trustworthiness and accuracy. Running a background check will help to corroborate information provided by an individual and thus ensure they are who they say they are, helping to provide a clearer picture of their identity, work history, qualifications and criminal background, in turn reducing the likelihood of fraud. However, the inclusion of municipal and national databases, registries, court systems, and other data sources can complicate background screening.

What can VettingGateway do?

VettingGateway is a user-friendly online background checking platform that provides both template-based and custom background checks. This platform will allow you to check even the simplest information such as names, countries and much more. Background checking information such as names and countries for applicants is important as it improves the accuracy and depth of the background check, giving you complete confidence in the potential hire. With the help of VettingGateway, you may learn about the numerous alternatives available to help you reach your screening objectives while also limiting your background screening budget.

If you would like to learn more about VettingGateway you can click here, or you can sign up for your free starter licence and claim three free reference check by clicking here.


The information Provided by VettingGateway in this blog was published on the 10/02/2022, all information was relevant at the time of publishing however as our landscape is forever changing this information may not remain valid.

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