Insurer Norwich Union confirmed that it had instituted legal action against a member of staff in the wake of a £1.5m employee fraud believed to have originated in one of the company’s claims departments. Some £3 billion in the UK go through the company’s claims offices, based at several locations in the UK, every year. No other members of staff are thought to have been involved.

A number of UK insurers have been the victims of employee misbehaviour in recent years. Several members of staff at Legal & General were fired after irregular dealings in tax-free individual savings accounts were uncovered in 2001. Earlier that year City of London Police made a number of arrests at Prudential’s head office in connection with a conspiracy to defraud the company.