Fraud, theft and crime are estimated to cost U.S. businesses five percent of their annual revenue. Focused on launching a business or navigating a challenging economic environment, small business owners often lack the business systems and personnel to properly protect their business assets. Furthermore, small businesses frequently do not have adequate back-up plans for recovering from serious theft or crime.
The top sources of fraud involve billing/false invoicing, cash paybacks, check tampering, skimming cash and falsifying expenses. Many small businesses have historically lacked the internal resources to adequately protect their assets from these risks. Fortunately, improvements in bookkeeping software and online banking now offer the following ways to mitigate many of these risks for small business owners:
- Electronic payments, deposits and credit cards make it safer, cheaper, faster and easier to track finances.
- Routine financial tasks can be automated for easier auditing and better control.
- Online systems automate fraud control.
- Digital financials eliminate the need for paper-based transactions.
- Easy file sharing enables your accountant to serve as a virtual CFO, who can quickly generate reports to alert you to the possibility of fraud.