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Forensics and fraud in the digital age

18:19 minutes listen

In this episode, Forensic expert Anne van Heerden talks about white collar crime in the digital age, the extent of corporate fraud in Switzerland in 2020 and why prevention can be better than cure. 

"We see now in particular with COVID that companies are finding it hard to find the balance between allowing their staff remote access to their systems, while keeping unwanted visitors out."

– Anne van Heerden, Head of Forensic

Insights and takeaways

  • According to the KPMG Forensic Fraud Barometer*, the hardest hit by fraud in 2020 are public institutions and private individuals. Typical cases range from taking money from the employer on a management level to corruption, generating not only losses but excessive costs in resolving the cases
  • ‘Lone wolf’ fraudsters are often driven by greed or resentment, rather than out of necessity and an abuse of trust by people in positions of authority is often involved – with colleagues often saying they didn’t see it coming
  • Protecting your business against fraudulent activities requires a robust technology set-up for example with firewalls and screening, but it is equally critical to build staff awareness through training to identify weak spots. Awareness campaigns should be made on a regular basis to fend off today’s fraudsters who are getting more and more sophisticated.
  • A strong forensic team entails a combination of emerging technology like AI and Data Analytics and the team’s own flair and experience. This reduces the time to review the evidence but still utilizes the power of human judgement. 
     

* The KPMG Forensic Fraud Barometer covers all court cases tried in public and reported in the media over the course of the year.

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