Don’t Hire A Fraud Investigator Until You Know What I Know!
Fraud investigations have been on the rise over the last decade, and it isn’t because business owners are getting paranoid. If anything, business owners have only recently gotten wise to the enormous kind of threat that financial fraud poses to their livelihood.
Let’s talk about some of the invisible methods scammers use to grind your bottom line, and the situations where hiring a specialized can save it.
Bank and Mortgage Fraud Two of the main areas of work for a financial fraud investigator are in bank and mortgage fraud. Makes sense – edges and real estate are where the money is. And bank fraud isn’t just an American problem. International money fund suspects that banking fraud cost the industry around $6 billion a year worldwide.
The corporate fraud investigation field covers a wide range of fraudulent activities by a company’s employees and clients. Whether it’s:
- Reviewing questionable documents and transactions.
- Backtracking the supplies of deposits or looking at transfers of suspicious funds, or
- Observing clients and employees activities
It’s a job that always keeps you busy. There are times when absolutely no suspicious activity is found – but it’s more than worth the work when you get a hit.
Of course, if you’re going to work on banking and mortgage fraud, some skill with numbers doesn’t hurt. When you’re ready to hire someone to track down signs of fraud, look for some study in accounting and financing, in addition as a criminal investigation degree or some other kind of criminal experience. With financial fraud on the rise, the need for people with the skills to nab these crooks is only going up.
The requirements should extend beyond a few diplomas. A fraud investigator should have integrity, honesty, and the ability to manager sensitive, secret material with the utmost care.
There are times when already the best people in the justice system don’t have the time and resources needed to give your case the attention you feel like it deserves. A private investigator can be an amazing supplement to police or attorneys, as long as they approach it with the right course of action.
First, each investigation should get a complete, top down review. They should talk to everyone connected with the case – police, doctors, applicable witnesses. They should find them, talk to them in detail, and get recorded and written statements. We also analyze and review documents and photographs. Digital evidence, physical evidence, public records – it all needs to be tracked down and then complied in a way that stands up in court.
Trust can difficult when there’s a lot of money or strength at play. Training to detect anomalies in corporate accounting is nearly a field of its own. Investigators need to estimate financial statements, accounting practices and accounting compliance to root out possible trouble before it happens.
One of the hurdles in dealing with corporate fraud is that the criminals are savvier than the average criminal, and most people in the corporate chain of command don’t have time to give thought to these kinds of problems – according to a study by PriceWaterhouseCooper, most fraud situations are accidental completely by accident. But once a problem is discovered, a savvy investigator can track down the problem. When you’re ready to hire, get someone who will:
- Look at all the applicable reports – spreadsheets, memos, statements – for any signs of financial discrepancies.
- Where there isn’t a paper trail, they should make one. A savvy criminal might wipe a hard excursion – but a savvy investigator finds off-site backups or uses world-class recovery software to fish out information the speculate thinks they purged.
- Financial profiling is a timeless method. No matter how well you crunch the numbers, nothing is a stronger indicator that something’s amiss than a simple investigation.
- Chart the speculate’s stock options, paychecks, and investments, then talk to friends and co-workers to get information on their spending habits.