Very few organizations actively audit for Fraud. Rather, their auditors are content to conduct financial, operational and compliance audits and to investigate Fraud only when symptoms are so egregious that fraud is suspected.
The five (5) ways to eliminate Fraud opportunities are: (1) having good internal controls; (2) discouraging collusion between employees and customers or vendors and clearly informing vendors and other outside contacts of your company’s policies against fraud; (3) monitoring employees and providing a hotline (whistle-blowing system) for anonymous tips; (4) creating an expectation of punishment; and (5) conducting proactive auditing.
Creating a culture of honesty, openness, and assistance includes three (3) factors: (1) hiring honest people and providing fraud awareness training; (2) creating a positive work environment, which means having a well-defined code of conduct, having an open-door policing, not operating on a crisis basis, and having a low-fraud atmosphere; and (3) providing an employee assistance program that helps employees deal with personal pressures.
Most organizations do not have a comprehensive approach to preventing and deterring Fraud. In fact, most companies don’t think about fraud until they experience one. When fraud occurs, they go into crisis mode, investigate and try to resolve the fraud, and then wait until another fraud occurs. A more comprehensive fraud-fighting approach would involve: creating the right kind of modeling and tone at the top, educating and training employees about fraud, assessing risks and putting proper controls in place, having reporting and monitoring systems in place, proactively auditing for fraud and then, when fraud does occur, investigating and following up
People typically become involved in already existing fraud schemes as a result of power that is exercised on them by another individual. The five (5) separate types of power include: reward, coercive, expert, legitimate and referent. It is through either one or a combination of several types of power that a potential fraud perpetrator is influenced to become involved in a fraudulent scheme. Reward power is the ability of a fraud perpetrator to convince a potential victim that he or she will receive a benefit through participation in the fraud scheme. Coercive power is the ability of a fraud perpetrator
People commit fraud because of a combination of perceived pressure, rationalization and opportunity. The majority of frauds starts small as the result of an immediate financial need. Once individuals gain confidence in their fraudulent scheme, the fraud continues to get larger and larger until it is discovered. The fraud triangle provides a lens from which to examine any fraud. The fraud triangle is comprised of perceived pressure, perceived opportunity and rationalization. Fraud will only occur if all three elements of the triangle are present. Pressure is one of the three elements of the fraud triangle. Pressure is especially important because it is typically
Fraud perpetrators usually cannot be distinguished from other people on the basis of demographic or psychological characteristics. People that commit fraud are usually good people who consider themselves to be honest – they just get caught up in a bad situation as a result of pressure, opportunity and rationalization.
There is no universal definition of fraud in law and definitions and scope what constitutes fraud vary from one jurisdiction to another. There are three main categories of fraud that affect organizations: Asset misappropriation, which involves the theft or misuse of an organisation’s assets. Fraudulent statements usually in the form of falsification of financial statements in order to obtain improper benefit. Corruption such as the use of bribes or acceptance of kickbacks, improper use of confidential information, conflicts of interest and collusive tendering.
A substantial increase in your telephone bill is an indication your company could be the victim of Private Automatic Branch Exchange (PABX) fraud. Detailed billing will assist in identifying any potential unauthorised calls, usually International calls but they can also be National telephone calls. Another indicator is where customers trying to dial, in or employees trying to dial out, find that the lines are always busy.
Fraud perpetrators may cold call you claiming there are problems with your computer and they can help you to solve them. Those fraud perpetrators often use the names of well-known companies such as Microsoft, Apple or IBM. They could even use the name of your broadband provider to sound more legitimate.