A long overdue reform of the Companies House platform will help keep business owners’ data more secure and offer additional protections from fraud.

In an announcement made this month, the Government said the major upgrade of the Companies House register is aimed at “tackling misuse and ensuring its accuracy”.

It comes after recent research revealed that more than 10,000 people have made complaints about the register over concerns about their personal data in the last three years.

According to the details of the proposed reform, Companies House will operate greater due diligence over who is registered and who controls companies. As part of this, individuals who have a key role in a company will have their identity verified to ensure they are who they say they are.

Likewise, the register will also be made easier to edit incorrect information, as well as perform accuracy checks in the background.

To help protect the personal data of directors, those on the register will also be given additional rights over their information, such as their personal address, while still remaining transparent to the appropriate authorities.

Commenting on the changes, Chief Executive of Companies House Louise Smyth said: “The register already plays a vital role in contributing to the UK’s economy through the investment decisions which rely on our data. This package of reforms represent a significant milestone for Companies House as they will enable us to play a greater part in tackling economic crime, protect Directors from identity theft and fraud and improve the accuracy of the register.”

Business Minister Kelly Tolhurst added: “The UK already has some of the strongest protections in the world against money laundering. We are ranked as one of the top countries worldwide for cracking down on economic crime – protecting businesses and consumers.

“Knowing that a company’s information is accurate and transparent is a fundamental part of a leading business environment – giving entrepreneurs and businesses the confidence they need to do business in the UK.”

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