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In New Jersey And New York call

Dunn Lambert, LLC | Attorneys At Law



Business Law Professionals

Signs someone is stealing from your business

On Behalf of | May 27, 2024 | Commercial Litigation |

Internal theft can significantly impact your business, causing financial losses and damaging trust within the company. When the theft happens within your accounting department, the risks are even higher due to their access to financial records and funds. Being aware of the signs of theft can help you detect and address the issue promptly.

Unexplained discrepancies in financial records

One of the first signs of theft is unexplained discrepancies in financial records. Regular audits may reveal missing funds, altered documents, or inconsistent entries. If the numbers do not add up and there is no logical explanation, it may indicate someone is manipulating the records to cover their tracks.

Employees living beyond their means

Another red flag is when an employee suddenly starts living beyond their means. If you notice someone in your accounting department making extravagant purchases, taking expensive vacations, or significantly upgrading their lifestyle without a corresponding increase in salary, it might suggest they are funding their lifestyle through theft.

Resistance to audits and reviews

Employees involved in theft often resist audits and reviews. If someone in your accounting department is overly defensive or uncooperative when asked to provide financial documents or participate in an audit, it could be a sign they have something to hide. Transparency should be a standard practice, and resistance might indicate wrongdoing.

Frequent complaints from vendors or clients

A common sign of theft is frequent complaints from vendors or clients. This could be about unpaid invoices or discrepancies in their accounts. If your accounting department is not processing payments correctly or is altering records, it can lead to these types of complaints. Paying attention to external feedback can help you spot potential issues early.

Unusual transactions or missing documents

Keep an eye out for unusual transactions or missing financial documents. Unauthorized transfers, duplicate payments, or missing invoices can be signs of theft. Regularly reviewing bank statements and accounting records can help you identify these irregularities.

Excessive overtime or unusual work hours

If someone in your accounting department consistently works excessive overtime or has unusual work hours, it might be a sign they are trying to manipulate financial records without drawing attention. While dedication to the job is admirable, unusual work patterns can sometimes indicate illicit activity.

Recognizing the signs of theft in your accounting department is crucial for protecting your New Jersey business. By staying vigilant and addressing these issues promptly, you can safeguard your business from internal theft.