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Losses in Irish Businesses Due to Fraud & Abuse
Irish business research undertaken by Mazars Ireland shows that businesses are experiencing financial loss due to occupational fraud and abuse. Of those senior business leaders surveyed, approximately 50% had experienced a loss due to occupational fraud and abuse over the past two years, with the average financial loss being between €10,000 and €20,000.
The research also pointed to a worryingly low level of awareness of anti-bribery and corruption legislation amongst Irish businesses, with 50% unaware of the recent Criminal Justice (Corruption Offences) Act 2018 which introduced the new corporate liability offence and allowed for a corporate body to be held liable for the corrupt actions committed for its benefit by any director, manager, secretary, employee, agent or subsidiary.
Other key findings of the research included:
Commenting on the research and results, Justin Moran, Director, Forensic and Investigation Services, Mazars noted: “This research provides important insights in respect of the cost of occupational fraud and abuse impacting businesses across Ireland and importantly highlights the potential vulnerability of organisations. The findings indicate the need for a more proactive approach to identifying and mitigating fraud-related risks, and at Mazars we recommend businesses undertake more proactive Fraud Risk Assessments to identify what controls are in place to deter the threat of fraud.”
“While the research indicates that theft of cash was most common at 32%, a broad array of abuses were noted indicating that businesses across all sectors are at risk. Regardless of the amount or perceived severity, fraud fundamentally threatens the viability of a business, impacting not only owners but also employees and customers alike. It is therefore incumbent on business leaders to take positive action to protect both reputation and brand”.
In February 2019, Mazars conducted a quantitative online survey of nearly 100 senior figures to provide an insight into the level of actual occupational fraud and abuse experienced in Ireland. The representative sample comprised a cross-section of businesses by size (measured by number of employees), sector and industry.
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