One of the things that blew my mind when working in the security industry was the fact that the majority of thefts were due to employee perps (aka – perpetrators). That’s right! I know you’re saying to yourself, “Nah-ah”…..but I say to you “Yah-ha.”
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimates that 75 percent of all employees steal at least once, and that half of these steal repeatedly. The Chamber also reports that one of every three business failures is the direct result of employee theft. According to their report – employee dishonesty costs American business in excess of $50 billion annually. And don’t think it can’t happen in your company.
Here are a few lies we tell ourselves about employee theft:
Lie #1: We are careful in the selection of our employees!
That may be true, but the majority of employees who steal are ‘first time offenders.’
Lie #2: We have our own security department!
Last year, a western regional bank suffered a number of “ski-mask” robberies. When the robber was finally caught, he turned out to be the bank’s Director of Security! How about them apples?
Lie #3: Our computer systems have the latest anti-hacking software.
That’s cool, but more than 65 percent of IT crime is traceable to insiders.
Lie #4: Our cameras and undercover agents catch most shoplifters.
Uh, did you know that according to the National Retail Security Survey, 48 percent of merchandise losses are attributable to employees.
Lie #5: Our procedures are foolproof.
Famous.Last.Words. Many of the largest frauds occur in companies who say this. No matter how effective the internal control and accounting system, it is not unbeatable.
Lie #6: We would not want to insinuate and accuse our staff who have been with us for many years.
This sounds thoughtful and considerate, but a little naive – don’t you think?
Lie #7: Those are just isolated incidents.
Most large losses are caused by long-term, ongoing schemes that are cleverly hidden for years.
Lie #8: We have never suffered a theft by an employee.
That may be true, but the fact that you may never have had a fire or a vehicle involved in an accident, does not prevent you taking out property insurance. And maybe, you just don’t know it yet.!
U.S. businesses lose as much as $110M dollars a day due to employee-related crimes. And oh yeah, most employee theft goes undetected.
So the next time you think your employee looks like they may have put on a several pounds OVER LUNCH they just may have your whole meat department all up under that skirt so they can feed those youngans at home. (By the way this is a true story from a Cracker Barrel owner in Alabama where I had installed security cameras to catch the perp who was stealing all the meat from the freezer).
Here’s more info on the subject and what to do.