Recession turning people to crime

| February 2, 2009 | 0 Comments

According to KPMG’s Forensic Fraud Barometer, fraud by company managers, employees and customers has increased threefold in the last 12 months.

The accountancy firm found that £1.1 billion worth of fraud cases were heard at British courts last year - the second highest since the survey began in 1987.

The highest level was in 1995 - after the British Government was forced to withdraw the pound out of the European exchange rate mechanism on Black Wednesday (16 September 1992).

Hitesh Patel, fraud investigation partner at KPMG Forensic, fears that the level of fraud could rise further.

As the global economic downturn takes hold and organisations look ever more closely at their operations it is very likely that more fraud will come to light so that the real impact of the credit crunch on fraud is yet to be fully felt, explains Mr Patel.

The research discovered that half of fraud by value was committed in London and the south east. However, the sharpest increase in fraud was noted in the Midlands, where fraud amounting to £380 million was committed - three times the level seen in 2007.

Just recently, the global economic downturn resulted in the fraudulent pyramid scheme of Bernard Madoff. The disgraced Wall Street trader conned clients out of $50 billion £33 billion).

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