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As an owner of a retail business, you are fully aware of the risk of shoplifting and theft by customers. However what many owners fail to consider is the idea of employees being dishonest and untrustworthy.

Companies of all shapes and sizes around the country suffer losses each year as a result of thefts by employees. This can be in the form of stock theft, hacking or fraud, and can be fatal for an organisation if it affects cash flow or even its reputation.

Case Study

An employee has been working for a company for a long period of time, and is considered to be highly trustworthy.

His senior position involves ordering all stock within a required budget, and management do not monitor the amount or type of stock ordered. He uses this knowledge and responsibility to steal £70,000 of stock over a six month period.

Acts such as fraud, theft, corruption and money laundering cost UK companies £32bn in 2003, and on top of this £8bn was spent to combat the problem. Nearly a third of all shoplifting in the UK is committed by employees, and the average cost of an employee theft is £1,988.

Although these criminal acts can never be eradicated completely, protecting your business with the correct insurance and risk management will dramatically decrease the cost and damage they will cause to cash flow, employee morale and the reputation of the organisation.

It is very important that you perform frequent and thorough checks to prevent theft in the first place. This can be difficult when it involves staff who are able to access tills, safes and stock, however having a good CCTV system can act as a deterrent to both staff and customers.