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When Big Data Yields Disappointing Results

BY Nick Judd | Friday, February 24 2012

The Associated Press' Kelli Kennedy reports that an expensive and newfangled computer system designed to prevent fraudulent Medicare payments has yielded disappointing results:

Launched last summer, a $77 million computer system to stop Medicare fraud before it happens had prevented just one suspicious payment by Christmas. That saved taxpayers exactly $7,591.

Hoping for much better results, a disappointed Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., says, "I wondered, did they leave out some zeros?"

The congressionally mandated system was built by Northrum Grumman and a group of other companies, Kennedy reports, and has yielded its savings so far after flagging 2,500 leads and 600 suspicious cases.