Because they lack the resources to identify and prosecute fraud, small businesses are especially vulnerable to theft and security breaches. In fact, up to 30% of fraud attempts are directed at small businesses, resulting in billions of dollars lost every year. The best approach to fraud is to build a good defense, so business consulting specialists recommend taking an active stance to identify fraud before it forces you out of business.
3 Tips for Identifying Fraud
1. Research New Business Contacts
Always be careful with unsolicited offers from B2B vendors, especially if they ask for large payments up-front for their services. They may be legitimate, or they could be scammers who will simply disappear with your money. Many fraudulent companies also offer “free trials,” which are attempts to collect your personal information to use in other criminal activity. Before doing business with any new vendor, research their reputation and see what other customers have said.
2. Check Your Receipts
According to business consulting experts, cash stolen by an employee is one of the most common forms of fraud, and one of the most difficult to identify. Frequent inventory inconsistencies may indicate employees are not recording sales and taking the money, and altered deposit records might mean that your cash isn’t making it to the bank.
3. Review Your Invoices
Employees with access to your accounts payable system may be able to create false invoices, diverting money into their own accounts. Look for invoices with missing tax information, invalid phone numbers, or very vague descriptions of the services provided.
Fraud and other criminal activity can be difficult to detect, which is why companies throughout Minneapolis rely on SDK CPAs and their wide range of business consulting services. With more than 25 years of experience and valuable financial expertise, their CPAs have the tools to comb through your records and protect you from fraud. Visit their website for more information on their auditing and business consulting services, follow their Facebook for news and updates, or call (612) 332-5500 to make an appointment today.