Pandemics which trigger financial downturns (banks like Lehman Bros in 2008 and COVID-19 this year) will pass but at a lingering financial cost. We can cushion any ensuing financial hardships by removing the unnecessary cost of fraud in society. And there is no better time than now to do it. A recent global study put the cost of fraud committed by outsiders and insiders together at a staggering 6% of GDP in 2019 alone, and this cost seems to be rising.
How to vaccinate against the costs of fraud in 2021!
Everyone’s cost of fraud can be almost eradicated, but the crucial ingredient is you! For us, 2020 was one of the most inspiring years ever, because this year so many of our friends and clients turned words into action. Here’s a selection of experiences we are grateful for and wish to share:
At least 3 global organisations with which we worked, a UN body, one of the world’s oldest banks and a professional body used the mantra “everyone’s a fraud detective” and empowered employees and members with practical tools to root out and deal with fraud early
Days after COVID-19 hit his organisation, the enigmatic CEO of a major NGO led the charge to ensure that every penny went to those who needed it in some of the poorest countries, blocking fraud and doing it in a way which to gain trust and teamwork and develop shared insights.
Deploying precrime tools and techniques, many diligent and passionate clients across the world have taken up the challenge to root out excessive costs and waste in their organisations and prevent future fraud. Sometimes it was just about taking that little bit of extra care to spot an extra line on an invoice from a supplier or a number out of place on a payslip.In the wake of alarming letters, top management, did not panic but calmly gained much needed insights, pinpointed the root causes and aimed to protect the innocent and whistleblowers alike!
Turning bad news to good news…from Red Flags to “Blue Spots”
For years we have called indicators of fraud “red flags”. But the term red flag is laden with negative and sometimes frightening connotations…and is even a little disrespectful to certain countries.
The above demonstrate that finding the indicators of fraud early, stops any spread, will save costs, and help every organisation become more resilient to fraud than ever! We think it’s worth repeating that well-worn phrase – it’s not a problem – it’s an opportunity! Next month: How to find and turn theblue spotsto your advantage!