How to Protect Yourself from Bookkeeper Fraud?

A bookkeeper who steals from you do not normally appear with a bright neon name tag with the word, “thief,” blazed across it. They are normally the people whom you would suspect the least.

Sadly the story of embezzlement is told way too many times. One particular bookkeeper had been stealing from a company for an entire 15 years and had embezzled thousands of dollars from them, forcing them into bankruptcy. Not only did their money vanish, but so did she. Poof!

Five tips to help keep your company safe from Bookkeeper fraud :

Never give your banking information to anyone –

NEVER. Not a single person. Giving a banking or financial institution password to someone else is like handing the head mouse your key to the cheese room. Once you realize that you have money missing, it is too late. That money and your bookkeeper are probably long gone by then.

Same thing goes for leaving blank signed checks lying around for when you leave for holidays. It’s an easy solution if you plan on being gone and shipments are coming in while you will not be there to pay or sign for them. This is something that many people do in good faith – a common thing. It’s done for the ease of handling business for staff, office managers, and employees. What it means to a thief is a trip to paradise without having even to forge your signature. Don’t do it.

Giving signing authority on your bank accounts over to your bookkeeper

No, No, No! That’s giving authorized permission to use your accounts for anything. You are responsible – whether that was your ‘intention’ or not. In the financial industry and legal interpretation of your actions – You are held liable! Signing authority means ownership. Check here !

Do not hand over your bank statements to your bookkeeper unopened

You must be the first and only person to review that document before it gets into their hands. Be consistent with this every month. Bookkeepers are often the only ones who open bank statements, and their actions can be overlooked for decades before they are discovered because of this one simple letter opening task. Open all financial statements first yourself.

Have a check and balance system with your bookkeeping and accounting-

Let two completely different people handle each function. The accountant will be responsible for the review of the bookkeeper records, and the bookkeeper will be responsible for the review of the accountant financial interpretation of the records. One will serve to, ‘look over the shoulder,’ of the other.

It cost them everything they ever owned and their spirit never recovered from that loss because their bookkeeper and accountant fled the country and my grandparents were left to look after the devastation those two caused. The money they lost was never recovered. It cost our entire family.

To conclude:

Thieves like to brag about how ‘honest’ they are. If the hair on the back of your neck is standing up while you are listening to a story like this – then trust your instincts. Consistency and awareness are the keys. Keep your thumb on the throb of your business. Always use bookkeepers melbourne {}.