By Russ Warner, VP Marketing −
The world is experiencing ever higher levels of fraud and corruption. As reported numerous times in Converus’ blog, we see it in political offices like senators, presidents and mayors. We read about it in the corporate offices of multi-million dollar companies. Most readily apparent is the deception in the up-and-coming generation.
The age group entering the work force today boasts talent, gumption, and the vigor of youth to help them reach their ambitious goals. But like a child hiding something from a parent, many have a knack for deception and fraud. And according to a new report, young employees are acting on that knack with increased commonality.
Increase in Young Employee Fraud in U.K.
U.K.’s financial website “This Is Money” reported a so-called “changing of the guard for fraudsters.” Allegedly there are fraud cases amounting to £62 million amongst workers ages 26 to 35, which is up 285 percent since last year.
Interestingly enough, the reverse is happening with older employees – a drop of 72 percent for those 46 and older.
Youth and Technology
Some posit that the main reason for this transition is due not to young people playing off the “innocence of youth,” but rather utilizing their extensive experience with technology.
Hitesh Patel, a U.K. forensic partner at the U.S. tax audit firm KPMG LLP, the U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm, stated, “It is important for U.K. organizations to recognize that youth doesn’t always equal innocence, as a confident and tech-savvy generation comes through, adept at circumnavigating conventional controls and staying under the radar.”
Most would agree that it usually takes the younger generation just minutes to become familiar with a new software program or a website, while it seems to take parents and grandparents months to do the same (if at all).
Technology and data are easily manipulated to enable individuals to steal or engage in otherwise corrupt and fraudulent activities. For a generation born and bred with technology, this form of deception comes even more easily.
Monitoring employee use and access to data and technology may be increasingly difficult but ever more necessary with the rise in business fraud among younger employees.