Preventing and Detecting Employee Theft and Embezzlement: A Practical Guide / Edition 1

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You're a busy business owner. You don't have time to think about whether or not any of your employees may be stealing from you or embezzling from your business. Or . . . do you?

Based on author Stephen Pedneault's experience of over twenty years working with clients and counsel in a wide range of employment-related issues—many stemming from some type of theft or embezzlement of assets, money, proprietary information, or all three—Preventing and Detecting Employee Theft and Embezzlement: A Practical Guide is the readable, useful resource that will help you better protect your business.

From implementing prudent hiring policies and practices through collecting receipts, making deposits, writing checks, paying employees, and evaluating the adequacy of insurance coverage, this essential book covers the major financial areas commonly found in most small businesses, and provides you with easy steps to follow in preventing and detecting embezzlement.

With checklists at the end of each chapter so you can literally start protecting your business right away, this practical guide takes a closer look at:

  • Why you would be wise to perform independent due diligence on a potential employee—even if they are referred by someone else
  • The truth about contacting past employers when checking on a candidate—why it's not much help
  • What you must do in the hiring process to better protect yourself and your business
  • How to know and monitor your existing employees

If you are a business owner—even if your business is very small—and you don't want to get burned by employee theft or embezzlement of any kind, Preventing and Detecting Employee Theft and Embezzlement is the practical guide you want to keep by your side. Its shorter chapters, checklists, and cases are specifically designed to work with your busy schedule, to make prevention and detection of employee theft a more effortless reality in your business.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470545713
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 6/28/2010
  • Series: Wiley Professional Advisory Services Series, #5
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 310
  • Sales rank: 546,685
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

STEPHEN PEDNEAULT, CPA/CFF, CFE, is the founder and Principal of Forensic Accounting Services, LLC, a CPA firm specializing in forensic accounting, employee fraud, and litigation support matters. Steve is the author of Fraud 101: Techniques and Strategies for Understanding Fraud and Anatomy of a Fraud Investigation, and a contributor to Fraud Casebook: Lessons from the Bad Side of Business, all published by Wiley. Steve has also written numerous articles appearing in local and national media, and is a frequent speaker on the subjects of employee embezzlement and forensic accounting. For more information about Stephen Pedneault, go to

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Table of Contents




CHAPTER 1 Hiring the Right Employees.


Where Do You Start?

Advice of Counsel.

Application Policy.

Due Diligence.

Personal Information.

Past Employment.



Criminal and Civil History Checks.

Credit Checks.

Hiring Time.

Hiring the Right Employees: Considerations.

CHAPTER 2 Know Your Employees.

Why Is Knowing Your Employees Important?

Open Communications.

What Should You Watch for in Your Employees?

Know Your Employees: Considerations.

CHAPTER 3 Sales, Cash Receipts, and Collections.

Here’s Where Everything Starts.

Recording and Tracking Sales.


Debit Memos and Other Adjustments.

Accounts Receivable.

Sales, Cash Receipts, and Collections: Considerations.

CHAPTER 4 Credit Card Sales, Transactions, and Merchant Statements.

Processing Sales.

Reconciling Sales.

Processing Refunds or Credits.

Reviewing and Reconciling Refunds or Credits.

Reviewing and Reconciling the Merchant Statement.

Credit Card Sales, Transactions, and Merchant Statements: Considerations.

CHAPTER 5 Purchases, Cash Disbursements, Checks, and Petty Cash.


Cash Disbursements/Checks.

Unpaid Bills/Accounts Payable.

Petty Cash.

Purchases, Cash Disbursements, Checks, and Petty Cash: Considerations.

CHAPTER 6 Credit Cards and Debit Cards.

Credit Cards.

Debit Cards.

Credit Cards and Debit Cards: Considerations.

CHAPTER 7 Employee Expense Reimbursement.

Expense Submission.

Where Are the Abuses?

Payment Processing.

Employee Expense Reimbursement: Considerations.

CHAPTER 8 Electronic Banking.

Traditional Banking (In-Person Deposits and Manual Check Writing).

Check Processing and Clearing Changes.

Changes in Bank Deposits.


Online Banking.

What Can You Do?

Electronic Banking: Considerations.

CHAPTER 9 Payroll Processing.

Payroll Administration: Adding/Changing/Terminating.

Payroll Processing.

Payroll Tax Returns.

Payroll Processing: Considerations.

CHAPTER 10 Inventory Issues and Controls.

Prevention: Good News and Bad News.

Retail Businesses: Items Available for Sale.

All Businesses: Items for Use by Employees (Supplies, Tools, and Equipment).


Inventory Issues and Controls: Considerations.

CHAPTER 11 Bank Statements, Canceled Checks, and Reconciliations.

Bank Statements.

Investment Account Statements.

Canceled Checks.

Bank Reconciliations.

Bank Statements, Canceled Checks, and Reconciliations: Considerations.

CHAPTER 12 Financial Reports.

Generate Financial Reports Regularly.

Why Is the Regular Review of Financial Reports So Important?

When to Consider Outside Advice and Assistance.

Financial Reports: Considerations.

CHAPTER 13 Safeguarding Your Bookkeeping or Accounting Systems.

Manual Bookkeeping Systems.

Computerized Bookkeeping and Accounting Systems.

QuickBooks Users.

Safeguarding Your Bookkeeping or Accounting Systems: Considerations.

CHAPTER 14 Prevention, Detection, and Insurance.

Timing Is Everything.

Adequacy of Coverage.

Responsibilities for a Claim.


Prevention, Detection, and Insurance: Considerations.

CHAPTER 15 Your Response to an Identified or Potential Issue.

A Dreaded Day of Discovery.

Due Diligence on the Discovery.

What If It Appears to Be Fraud?

Your Response to an Identified or Potential Issue: Considerations.

Appendix A: Embezzlement Controls for Business Enterprises.

Appendix B: Who Was Lester Amos Pratt?

About the Author.


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