Salary or Payroll fraud is most easily defined as employees who cheat the payroll system at their workplace to receive funds they are not entitled to. There are a number of ways that salary fraud can be committed, including salary, hourly, and commission workers, as well as ways to prevent and detect it.
What is salary fraud?
For salaried workers, the most common form of salary fraud is fraudulently increasing the amount they should receive, or adding a false employee to the list and forfeiting these wages.
For employees who are paid hourly rather than salary, methods of salary fraud can include changing the number of hours worked, logging in and out at the wrong times, or working shifts when not working.
Commissioners or employees who work in production and are paid for how many units they produce can also pay fraud. This is done by forgery of records, z. For example, how many sales have you made or what units have produced them?
The last common form of salary fraud occurs in false expense reports. This can range from a meal with family or friends claimed as part of doing business with a customer to trips that are falsely referred to as business travel or meetings.
How to identify payroll fraud?
While payroll fraud is rare, there are many examples of where it happened, and it can potentially make businesses and employers lose a significant amount of money. A 2011 study found that UK businesses lose around £ 38 billion a year due to salary fraud. Five percent of all expenses were found wrong, totaling over £ 150 million. However, this figure covers only what is discovered, so the actual number is likely to be much higher.
Due to the high financial cost of salary fraud and the severity of such offenses, a number of methods have been developed to expose payroll fraud and to provide evidence of suspicion. Some of the main signs that cheating fraud occurs are as follows:
• signs of an employee leading an excessively expensive lifestyle for his earnings
• Several employees who are not family members and share an address or bank account
• Have an employee who is unfamiliar with the payroll system
• Anomalies in payroll
Prevent wage fraud
While it is important to recognize whether fraudulent activity is taking place in a company, it is equally important to do everything possible to ensure that this does not happen from the outset. In addition to frequent payroll reviews, this can be done by ensuring that employees are aware of the full consequences of salary fraud. Wage fraud penalties go well beyond the scope of a disciplinary measure or have to repay money, often imposing substantial prison sentences on perpetrators.
When a field or non-team employee reviews the records from time to time, the likelihood of a misconduct being detected increases. Not every case where an employee is overpaid is fraudulent, mistakes can be made, and frequent reviews of the system can also help quickly resolve these errors without causing significant financial losses for the company or employee.
Consequences of wage fraud
Wage fraud is a serious crime, with severe penalties for those who have been proven to be involved. In July 2012, a British man who had carried out a heavy payroll fraud in the millions was sentenced to 17 years in prison. While most cases do not include such high amounts, imprisonment is a common punishment for salary fraudsters. Make employees aware that not only will they lose their jobs, but that their freedom is a sure way to reduce the risk that employees will consider payroll fraud. In addition to the risk of imprisonment, they must repay the money received during their fraudulent activity and another fine.
Many legal experts who specialize in fraud believe that pay fraud is committed because it is considered a „crime without a victim“ and that such acts are commonplace anyway. Ensuring that employees know that their actions are harmful and lead to significant sanctions is a good way to prevent this behavior, and they can encourage anyone who has committed undetected payroll fraud to wait with their actions.
By being careful to name only prime candidates to fill your vacancies, companies can ensure that they have trusted and reliable employees who do not cheat themselves and pick up suspicious activity from other employees.