Department for Work and Pensions banner campaign…

Has anyone else noticed the apparent blanket coverage of the Department for Work and Pensions Google AdSense banner advertising campaign? It seems impossible to logon the the likes of Hotmail and other similar public sites from a Spanish IP address without seeing this banner and and other variations on the theme.

You have to have to wonder how cost effective this is to the UK taxpayer? I’d love to see the relative cost to the monies recovered through prosecutions as a result of the campaign. My guess would be that the number of potential ‘informers’ would be very small compared to the number of honest ex-pats who pay their taxes in Spain would be very small.

And, seriously, what are the odds of the benefit fraudsters themselves clicking on it – and then feeling guilty enough to hand themselves in…? It’s not going to happen is it!

For those of us legitimately resident and not paying UK taxes, it does have something of a Big Brother feel. A bit like the school headmaster in an assembly trying to identify a culprit whilst making everyone else in the room feel somewhat guilty despite having committed no offence.

Personally I think they’d get far more bang for their buck running a PR campaign through ex-pat newspapers, publications and other media.