By Liz Johnson, Forensic Accounting Manager
A list of easy and effective safeguards for entrepreneurs and small business owners to follow:
10. Review bank statements and all cancelled checks on a monthly basis.
9. Make daily deposits of cash and check. Also, keep cash and checks secure until they’re in the bank.
8. Approve employee hours before payroll is processed and review payroll reports on a regular basis.
7. Insist that full time employees take mandatory vacations of at least five consecutive days per year.
6. Purchase employee dishonesty coverage.
5. Look over monthly company credit card statements and corresponding supporting receipts/documentation for employee issued credit cards as well as employee expense reimbursements.
4. Require individual usernames and passwords for accounting system access. Turn on audit trail features and restrict employees to specific functions within the accounting system relating to their job functions.
3. Install security cameras in high risk areas such as where cash, inventory and equipment are located.
2. Implement a fraud policy in the employee handbook.
(The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners has a sample fraud policy available on their website.)
And the number one tip for preventing fraud is …
1. Don’t allow employees to use your signature stamp. It is your signature. And keep it in a secure location, such as a safe or locked drawer that only you have access to, when you are not using it.