Fraud and embezzlement has become one of the fastest growing “careers” in our country for at least the last 20 years. National attention was brought to this growing epidemic on Monday, January 15, 2018 when USA Today featured on the front page an excerpt of a Detroit Free Press article entitled: “Embezzlement Plagues Union Offices Around U.S., Records Show” by Phoebe Wall Howard.
This article illustrates the breadth and depth of fraud and embezzlement in our great country as evidence by this quote from the article: “In just the past two years, more than 300 union locations have discovered theft, often resulting in more than one person charged in each instance, the records show.” The unions cited in the article represent more than 25 industries ranging from nurses to aerospace engineers to plumbers and electricians.
According to the article, reported cases from the Office of Labor-Management Standards indicate losses range from $1,051 to over $6 million. This is consistent with our 22-year history of dental embezzlement investigation. To date, we have investigated and finalized cases from $1,100 to more than $2.1 million. The average case today now averages over $100,000.00.
This Detroit Free Press article confirms many of the Red Flags we have written about and have been the topics of our seminars. Some of the most important facts to keep in mind are:
- fraud and embezzlement can go undetected for many years (resulting in significant losses)
- these schemes are often perpetrated by valued members of the business (even family members)
- thefts occur from big cities to small towns in every part of our country (no business is ‘safe’)
The good news is with education and the right checks and balances in place, you can greatly reduce your vulnerability to fraud, embezzlement, waste and abuse. Download our Vulnerability Index to test your current business practices and determine your level of risk. Then read more about Red Flags in the 6-part series we published in 2016 beginning with Spotting a Weasel: The Personality of a Dental Embezzler Part I.
Lastly, call or email us to schedule your complimentary consultation at Bryant@BrytanAssociates.com or 210.241.6329. Don’t allow yourself to become one of the statistics – learn how to protect your hard work and valued assets.