National Skill Development Corporation India (NSDC) is a not- for- profit company set up by the Ministry of Finance. It is partly held by the Government of India through Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE). NSDC aims to promote skill development by catalysing the creation of large, high quality and for-profit vocational institutions. The organisation also provides funding to build scalable and profitable vocational training initiatives.
Identifying Fraudulent Data
The enterprise has an extensive network of skilling partners across the country. The partners receive funding and payments based on skilling targets they achieve during a point in time. One key challenge the enterprise faced was a suspicion that a few of its partners were uploading fraudulent data on the system to meet the targets. They needed to identify those training centres but had no way of physically auditing data as there are well over 74.5 million trained individuals and over 350 training partners. To top it all, there are more than 39 sector skill councils and over 6500 training centres scattered across the length and breadth of India, making data validation even more complex.
In the absence of labelled data, Xelp adopted a multi-pronged approach based on exploratory analysis and pattern study of data that partners across India have entered over the years. Univariate and multivariate analysis, distribution and outlier study, geospatial analysis and business logic further helped in identifying ‘fake-looking’ data from respective partners. Further, a highly interactive dashboard was also created to give inclusive, incisive and apt insights on partners’ performance on various parameters over the years like the migration of candidates, pre and post training etc.
In the end, a scorecard is created for ranking the partners and indicating the observed quality and correctness of the data they have inputted over the years. The scorecard has also helped the clients get a view of the potential sizing of the issue besides helping in planning and conducting bespoke audits in a way not possible otherwise. The ranking of partners helped NSDC with the allocation of funds, in removing the illegitimate data and cutting down the overall expenditure. As a next step, the work is in the pipeline to detect anomalies in real time and conduct targeted audits to reduce incidents of fraud significantly.
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