Who Commits Fraud?

The latest Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse compiled demographic information on more than 1,400 fraudsters. The findings indicate that the majority of occupational frauds (78%) were committed by staff at the managerial or employee level. But, not surprisingly, the frauds committed by owners and executives had the highest median loss ($500,000).

Some 7% of the fraudsters were in their first year on the job, and 53% had been with their organizations for more than five years. The longer the fraudster was with the company, the larger the losses typically were. Similarly, 52% of perpetrators were ages 31–45, but older fraudsters tended to cause larger losses. These figures coincide with the finding that greater losses are associated with fraudsters with higher levels of authority — and, in turn, more opportunity to commit costly fraud schemes.

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