Bankruptcy can be a valid business tool when used properly. Unfortunately, it can also enable less-than-honest business owners to profit at the expense of their creditors. Such is often the case with “phoenix” companies that rise from the ashes of businesses that were deliberately run into the ground. To avoid becoming the unpaid creditor of […]

Hoping to find inexpensive or difficult-to-obtain concert, sporting and other event tickets, many consumers turn to the online resale market. But while most resale transactions are legitimate, some buyers are tricked and end up with stolen or counterfeit tickets, or no tickets at all. To avoid purchasing invalid tickets, buy from the event’s official ticketing […]

Forensic accountants are best qualified to unearth the “hows and whys” of occupational fraud. But it’s up to employers to know when it’s time to call for professional help in the first place. The signs of fraud can be easy to miss, but they’re usually there. Something doesn’t belong Dishonest employees may use anything from […]

From invoices and payments to discounts and write-offs, many business transactions are recorded to accounts receivable. This makes receivables a popular fraud target. But your business doesn’t have to become a victim. Common schemes Receivables fraud occurs when dishonest employees divert customer payments for their personal use. They use various methods, including: Lapping. This is […]

Business owners engaged in fraudulent activities often try to manipulate their companies’ financial statements. Fortunately for fraud experts, business owners’ tax returns aren’t as easy to misrepresent. Certain items on an owner’s Form 1040 can reveal hidden assets and income sources, particularly lines reporting income from wages, tax-exempt interest income, retirement plan distributions and refunds. […]

Are you harboring fictitious vendors in your accounting system? These are vendors invented by an employee — usually someone with the authority to approve invoices — to embezzle from the company. Thieves fabricate invoices and deposit payments to the fictitious vendor in their own bank accounts. This scam is easier to perpetrate in companies with […]

Gift cards offer businesses a convenient way to reward employees and thank customers. However, gift card scams targeting companies are popular and becoming more so. Since January 2017, losses have topped $1 million. In a typical scheme, fraudsters send employees “spoofed” emails asking them to buy multiple gift cards on behalf of a company executive. […]

Abusive tax shelters are transactions that have no legitimate business purpose and are used solely to reduce or eliminate tax liability. Unfortunately, business owners can be tricked into using one of these shelters and end up facing back taxes, interest and penalties. To protect yourself, be wary of unsolicited offers that promise to make you […]

Without strong controls over the use of cash registers, your business risks serious financial losses. Issuing fictitious refunds and falsely voiding sales are common ways employees steal money. Both involve disbursing cash without returning inventory and, thus, usually result in high inventory shrinkage. Other red flags include disparities between gross and net sales and missing […]

Your company has landed a lucrative new account, and the customer has already placed several small orders, paying in full, on time. Now the customer wants to place a larger order, but has requested that you first expand its credit account. Warning! There’s a chance that you could become a victim of bankruptcy fraud. Your […]