How Employee Theft Happens and What You Can Do about It

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Last year, a Rio Tinto secretary was charged and placed in jail for a year and a half for stealing more than $300,000 from her employer. This was not a result of a single incident. The amount the said administrative staff stole reached that magnitude after 5 years of covert fund misappropriation. The accused was in an ideal position to commit the crime due to the fact that she was the one responsible for the management and organisation of travel arrangements and events for her fellow employees. These responsibilities earned her accessibility to a corporate credit card, which she subsequently also used to fund personal expenses. A manager of any organisation needs to ask themselves – How much do you trust your own employees? Are any of these employees misusing company resources? You need to stop and ask yourself these questions. You should also endeavour to obtain the answers and quickly! The Australian Institute of Criminology has reported that about 62% of retail thefts “may be perpetrated or facilitated by employees.” Also, a survey undertaken in 2010 revealed that retailers in the country have incurred at least $10 billion in losses due to employee theft and shoplifting. If you operate in the retail industry, or in any other type of enterprise, it pays to give priority to ensuring that your merchandise and corporate assets are not acquired unlawfully. A key aspect is understanding how staff theft is carried out. You need to put yourself in the shoes of the perpetrator in order to be one step ahead of them and to prevent them from succeeding. Start with the most...