Published: November 10, 2022
Every year, the Special Investigations Team at the Office of the Washington State Auditor investigates frauds in all types of governments, from large state agencies to small towns and special purpose districts. In 2021, our Office examined 46 reported fraud cases, representing more than $647 million in misappropriated public resources. No matter the type or size of your government, fraud could happen to you and, if left undetected, it could have significant financial implications.
While our Office is always promoting awareness around preventing, detecting and deterring fraud, we’re ramping up our efforts next week in honor of International Fraud Awareness Week, which kicks of Nov. 13. Starting Monday, we’ll be posting articles daily on the Audit Connection Blog. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s to come:
- New fraud-prevention resource for elected officials and members of appointed boards. SAO’s Special Investigations Team created this guide to help elected officials and members of appointed boards understand their role in fighting employee fraud in their governments. The guide includes tips for implementing policies and best practices for preventing, detecting and responding to fraud.
- Strategies for preventing payroll-related fraud in a remote work environment. The shift to remote and hybrid work environments has created an increased risk for time theft, which is when employees aren’t working when they say are. This article will highlight some of the red flags of time theft and identify strategies for preventing it.
- Movies, podcasts and other media to help you understand fraud from all angles. Grab your popcorn! Back by popular demand, we’ve compiled a list our favorite documentaries, movies, shows and podcasts that provide great insight into real-life fraud schemes and scandals.
Be on the lookout for these articles and more, and make sure to check out the official website for #FraudWeek to learn how your government can get involved.
Fraud fact: According to the ACFE, a typical fraud case lasts 12 months before detection and usually causes an average loss of $8,300 per month.
Source: Association of Certified Fraud Examiners Occupational Fraud 2022: A Report to the Nations