Inside Job

It was a typical family business -- a husband and wife working in their retail store along with 15 trusted employees. Then one, the bookkeeper, began to write herself checks, eventually stealing $416,000 -- almost all of the profits. In another store, another trusted employee made fictitious refunds, which in turn made him $20,000 richer. Unfortunately, this is not unusual. In retailing, employee theft makes up the largest percentage of loss due to shrinkage. It accounts for 42.1% of retail crime, almost 10% more than shoplifting, according to the National Retail Security Survey conducted by the University of Florida. The average organization -- all businesses, not just retail -- loses 6% of its total annual revenue to fraud and abuse committed by its own employees, according to the survey. Think about it. Say a jeweler makes $500,000 a year. That means he or she loses $30,000 a
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