Follow these best practices to protect against employee fraud and theft.
Employee fraud accounts for 40 to 50 percent of all business losses, according to a 2008 Connecting Research in Security to Practice (CRISP) report estimate. But organizations have a secret weapon: Honest employees. “Eighty percent of the time,” JCK magazine reported, “honest employees know or strongly suspect who committed the theft.”
Our organization’s best protection: you, on guard.
Honest employees can actually prevent occupational fraud by following these best practices.
Set an example of integrity. Honesty really is the best policy. Demonstrating ethical behavior promotes respect and confidence in your work. Your example will rub off on those around you, making our organization a safe, pleasant place to work.
Remove temptation. Dispose of all unneeded documents containing proprietary or personally identifying information. If you don’t need it, dispose of it according to our organization’s document disposal policies.
Keep sensitive documents from prying eyes. When you work with documents containing confidential business or customer/client information—whether on your computer or on your desktop—make sure only you can see the information. Lock paper documents in a drawer and lock your computer to prevent unauthorized access to the materials in your absence.
Use caution with FAX and copy machines. Don’t let sensitive information sit unattended on shared resources, such as FAX machines, copiers, and printers. When you use these shared resources, retrieve the documents immediately. If someone tries to delay you, excuse yourself and return once you’ve secured the sensitive documents.
Escort visitors to your workplace. Make sure visitors—maintenance workers, vendors, other employees from other divisions from our organization, and even coworkers mingling near your desk—do not gain unsupervised access to sensitive materials in your workplace.
Report suspicious behavior immediately. Don’t ignore your intuition. You know when something is out of place or someone is acting oddly. Speak up. Voice your concerns to your manager or other authority.
Follow these best practices, as well as our organization’s security procedures, to maintain our organization’s profitability and keep sensitive information safe.