Fraud committed by employees in the UK rocketed by over 40% last year, according to the UK's fraud prevention service, CIFAS.
In terms of just what employees are being fraudulent about, it’s a mixed bag. It ranges from deception in the hunt for employment, namely by holding or falsely declaring information such as qualifications or failing to disclose previous convictions. Furthermore, attempts to gain benefit by deception or manipulation while in a job (such as stealing cash from customer accounts or employers) increased by 22%.
Beyond the damage done by fraudsters within the organisation’s walls – namely to the balance sheets, customer confidence and staff morale – CIFAS communications manager Richard Hurley said it can also lead to regulatory and legal punishments to organisations. “The 43% increase in staff fraud witnessed in 2012 demonstrates, therefore, that some organisations have invested in better protection and controls – enabling them to identify and prevent more fraud. Some of the frauds, however, demonstrate that organisations remain vulnerable,” he said.
"While these types of fraud are thankfully less commonplace than fraud attempts from outside an organisation, the damage that they can cause is as serious, if not more so."
Hurley added that while completely stamping out these kinds of fraud is very difficult, responsible employers can help to do so by sharing data on confirmed cases in order to prevent such fraudsters from simply moving on to another organisation. “It must also serve as a lesson to organisations to have better support networks in place for staff who are struggling financially, so that they do not turn to committing crime within the organisation,” Huxley added.