Thursday, December 18, 2008

Businesses Say Employee Theft Is Up

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that more and more trusted employees are stealing from their companies. Here are some snippets from a recent article by Sarah Needleman:

In the wake of the recession, more businesses are facing a growing financial threat: employee theft. New research shows that employers are seeing an increase in internal crimes, ranging from fictitious sales transactions and illegal kickbacks to the theft of office equipment and retail products meant for sale to customers.

Employers suspect that workers are pilfering from them to cope with financial difficulties at home or in anticipation of being laid off. What's more, it's often the most trusted workers who are committing the thefts.

About 20% of employers polled last month said workplace theft has become a moderate to very big problem recently, according to a survey from the Institute for Corporate Productivity Inc., in conjunction with

The survey polled managers and executives at 392 U.S. companies representing a range of sizes and industries. When asked if they had noticed a recent rise in monetary theft among employees, such as fraudulent transactions or missing cash, 18% said yes, 41% were unsure and the rest said they hadn't.

Further, 24% of respondents said they had detected an increase in stolen nonmonetary items, such as retail products and office supplies, while 43% were unsure and 33% hadn't.

In 2007, companies lost an average of $2.4 million to fraud, the majority of it by employees, up from $1.7 million in 2005, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, which conducts biannual surveys of around 5,400 companies of all sizes world-wide.

For the full article, visit:

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