Internal Theft

Preventing & Detecting Internal Theft

Unfortunately, some employees steal from their employers. You try to identify and minimize potential risks on the front end by performing pre-employment interviews, reference checks, background checks and credit checks.

So …what are some of the ongoing steps you can take to minimize this risk?

  1. Always check-in merchandise while a delivery person is present & never leave him/her unattended.
  2. Adopt a zero-shortage policy.
  3. Be alert for employees who:
  • Ring up lesser amounts on the register;
  • Don’t ring up sales;
  • Ring up “no sales” for purchases;
  • Overcharge customers & pocket the difference;
  • Take cash from a “common draw” register;
  • Take bad checks from accomplices;
  • Give employee discounts to friends;
  • Make false entries into records or books to cover theft;
  • Give fraudulent refunds;
  • Fail to record returned purchases (& steal an equal amount of cash);
  • Inflate their record of time worked;
  • Forge checks & destroy them when returned by the bank;
  • Cash their own checks through the til rather than cashing their own check, with approval, through another authorized employee;
  • Keep personal checks or checks of friends in the til in place of cash as a temporary “loan”;
  • Increase amounts on checks, invoices or vouchers after they are officially approved;
  • Invoice goods above established prices (& get kickbacks from the supplier);
  • Steal from the stockroom, racks or shelves (hiding merchandise in a handbag, behind stairs, in the trash or in a locker for later theft);
  • Soil/damage merchandise intentionally in order to buy it at a reduced price;
  • Hide merchandise to buy “on sale;”
  • Don’t check in merchandise from trucks & then take it home;
  • Make false entries on inventory so shortages won’t be noticed;
  • Put their own home address on “return” label of goods sent back to the manufacturer;
  • Pick up discarded receipts & then return items for a refund;
  • Use the postage meter or stamps for personal mail;
  • Arrive early or stay late without a reason.
  • Are unwilling or reluctant to take a vacation or schedule any time away from their work.