The stealing or use of an employer’s assets without authorization is on the increase in companies. Financial advisers and employees do commit this type of theft. Owners of small businesses may be able to monitor their workers against pilfering in workplaces. They can even try to recruit honest employees. However, bigger companies suffer most from internal theft as close surveillance of their staff may not be possible.
Besides leading to a considerable financial loss, employee theft can also lead to the shutdown of small businesses. Employers must be vigilant to prevent such illegal acts. Dishonest employees can steal trade secrets, money, products, supplies or misuse time. Managers are also guilty of internal theft as they occupy positions of trust with little supervision.
The following are ways through which an employee can steal from a business:
Employees can take funds illegally from cash registers when they make sales. They might quote a higher price than the actual amount and keep the difference once they receive the payment. Such employee will remove the cash before recording the sales.
Some workers may steal computers, staples, pens or other office supplies. Other dishonest employees can make away with expensive items like equipment or furniture. Pilfering of valuable properties occurs during unsupervised overtime.
Employees can divert a company’s merchandise during the distribution process. This act reduces the quantities of the products made available to customers. They remove these items on arrival at the warehouse before recording the merchandise on the inventory.
Employees can steal confidential data such as client lists, product designs, and other trade secrets. They can make money by selling the stolen information to competitors or other companies. Such persons can transfer the data to their smartphones or flash drive, print it out or send it through email.
Some workers can manipulate the payroll to get paid for periods they didn’t work. Those in the payroll department can increase their pay and even create a ghost employee. Such employees will cash the check sent to the non-existent member of staff. Another way they can illegally make money from the company is by requesting reimbursement for expenses that are not related to their jobs. Some employees spend working hours on the social media chatting with friends or playing games online.
Besides these methods, employees can also defraud a company by billing it for non-existent services. They can also falsify the authorized signatures and use the company’s check to transfer money to their personal accounts. These fraudulent methods used by employees to increase their income can financially drain businesses. However, hiring a professional private investigator can help in the detection of such crimes.
An expert can conduct an investigation into any suspected workplace theft. Evidence from the investigative process will be helpful in detecting the fraudsters. Besides solving incidents of internal theft, investigators can aid business owners to implement preventive measures. Installing security cameras and time-tracking devices will help to monitor the activities of the employees.
Investigators can conduct pre-employment background checks to make sure that companies recruit reliable workers. Employers should enforce proper accountability at all positions. Audits, as well as a comparison of the sales and shipment records, are useful in the detection and prevention internal theft.
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