The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) released its annual Report to the Nations last month. The ACFE’s keystone publication contains the results and observations of its 2017 Global Fraud Survey. The 80-page report is equal parts enlightening, impressive, alarming and optimistic.
Here are some of the report’s most interesting items:
- The ACFE identified more than $7 billion in total losses in real occupational fraud cases, which is up more than 10 percent from last year. This tells me that despite technological advances and overall fraud awareness, fraudsters are still finding a way.
- Data monitoring/analysis and surprise audits correlated with the largest reductions in fraud loss and duration. What’s surprising is that only 37 percent of the victim organizations implemented these controls. If we want to reduce that loss figure, implementing more fraud monitoring might help.
- Tips are still by far the most common initial detection method. That hasn’t changed as long as I’ve been reading these reports. Companies that use hotlines detect fraud by tips 16 percent more often. I wonder why some companies today still don’t offer hotlines.
While much of the report may seem shocking, there clearly are opportunities for companies to improve. Things appeared much bleaker a decade ago, and I believe the future’s bright for those of us who want to nip fraud in the bud.