Human Resources Issues Could Uncover Worse Crimes
By Ryan C. Hubbs, CFE, CIA, PHR, CCSA
Sophisticated fraudsters may be able to conceal their frauds, but they may not be as adept in hiding their workplace deviant behaviors. Identifying or recognizing a correlation between the two, even if the correlation is weak, could significantly improve the anti-fraud profession’s ability to uncover fraud. On his first day on the job, Joe started viewing “adult” movies on his company computer and paying for them on his company-issued credit card. He continued this behavior during his six years with the nonprofit and racked up more than $4,000 in inappropriate charges. But that wasn’t all. After Joe resigned, an audit of cash collections showed Joe took more than an additional $50,000 in donations. Another audit of the cash disbursement account also revealed Joe was writing checks payable to “cash,” and personal checks written from this account totaled more than $28,000. In the end, Joe’s frauds totaled more than $82,000. The company prosecuted Joe, and he received probation.
Throughout my career, when investigating fraud complaints, I would find that suspects often also would have problems with pornography, bullying, harassment and other human resources issues. Conversely, when I would be called in to investigate human resource complaints and issues, I occasionally would find one or more fraud schemes involving these individuals.