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28 March 2018

Addressing the issue: tackling identity fraud through Companies House addresses

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has published the draft Companies (Disclosure of Address) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 which seek to resolve increasing concerns about identity fraud due to home addresses being publicly available on the register at Companies House.

While in the 2009 regulations an individual had to show a serious risk of violence or intimidation in order to have their home addresses made private, the amendment now allows an individual to apply to the registrar without having to show that they have met any specified conditions. Applications can also be made for data published before 1 January 2003, which was the cut off point in the previous regulation.

Where it is required that an individual’s address remains on the register, it will be replaced with a service address. Where there is no such requirement, the registrar will ensure that the address is unavailable for public inspection except for the first part of the postcode or information about the geographical area.

These regulations are scheduled to come into force by the end of summer 2018.

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