The KPMG Fraud barometer provides a summary of frauds reported by the media in New Zealand for the 12 month period 1 August 2019 - 31 July 2020 and is prepared by the KPMG Risk Advisory Forensic team.

This edition shows that fraud reported in the year totalled $72 million, including a $45 million Ponzi scheme committed by a (now) deceased financial advisor.

Key highlights:

  • The value of large fraud cases, defined as over $100,000, totalled $72 million;
  • There were 19 cases identified in total;
  • There were two ‘super frauds’, frauds greater than $3 million; and
  • The largest fraud case identified concerned a $45 million Ponzi scheme that targeted wealthy Japanese citizens looking to move or invest in New Zealand.

As in previous editions, the key findings from the Barometer emphasise the need for all organisations, of whatever size, to consider their fraud risk management framework and the specific internal and financial controls that they have in place to detect and prevent fraud.

Due to Covid-19 three fraud factors, motivation, opportunity and rationalisation have coincided to create the perfect storm for fraud to occur. Consequently, we expect that the number of reported frauds in the coming years will increase.

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