The annual Global Retail Theft Barometer has found that shrinkage (shoplifting, employee fraud, organised crime etc.) has increased globally by 6.6% this year, totalling €88.878 million. In Europe, the increase in shrinkage has been even greater at 7.8% (representing 1.39% of retail sales).
Expenditure on loss prevention and security increased by 5.6% globally to €21m but the author of the report, Professor Joshua Bamfield, said that those retailers which achieved a reduction in shrinkage increased their loss prevention expenditure by twice this figure.
The report shows that, in these difficult economic times, retail theft is a growing problem. Retailers must think more creatively to overcome the challenges and maintain control over shrinkage.
A new website has launched which seeks to reduce the impact of counterfeit goods being sold online by providing a trusted place to find websites selling genuine products. An Organised Crime Task Force study in 2005 found that 13% of people in the UK had bought fakes thinking that they were real. The new website, www.brand-i.org, is one way of reducing this figure but the problem of counterfeits is likely to continue unless they are stopped at the source.
The 28-page report that lays bare the frauds recorded by the Members of the CIFAS Staff Fraud Database during 2009.
A 45% increase in staff fraud in 2009, compared with 2008.
A rise in theft offences such as fraudulent withdrawals from customer accounts and theft of cash.
An overall decrease in employment application fraud (where applications for employment contain serious discrepancies or lies): with a remarkable divergence between unsuccessful employment application frauds (a decrease of 40.48% in 2009) and successful employment application frauds (which saw a 30% increase from 2008).
A steep rise in the average length of service of a staff fraudster (prior to being recorded to the database for a proven fraud) to nearly 4.5 years in 2009, from just over 1.5 years in 2008.
An alarming 113% increase in cases of unlawful obtaining or disclosure of personal data.
Many clients I speak with have the legacy of trying to pull data from disperate corporate systems. Not only is this futile and error prone it is a very lengthy process which misses key information and delays the real investigation. Documents cannot be found, logged intelligence reports are missed and it seems that even working practices within the investigation are different depending on the background of the investigators involved. All his makes measuring success difficult and unreliable. Every successful solution has three core components People, Process, Systems. From what I’m seeing it looks like very little time is put into the reviewing of outdated and broken process and making sure that people are ready to take and use new technologies and that most time is spent throwing IT at the problem and saying “job done” when in effect it’s only just started… I’d like to hear off anybody who has good or bad experiences of this…