Since 2006 to the present, there has been a steady rise of America’s workers stealing time, money and product from their employers. We are not just talking about paper clips and pens. In his article, “Retail Crime Cost U.S. Retailers $41.7 Billion in 2011,” published in Retailing Today, Michael Johnsen reported $18.4 billion of this staggering amount was attributed to employee theft.
Corporate theft, occupational crime, dishonesty and workplace deviance are on the rise in the retail industry. Based on research by Martin Investigative Services, the employee theft rate held steadily at 15 percent from 1969 to 2006. This figure steadily skyrocketed from the third quarter of 2006 to the present where we are now at an alarming 75 percent.
The problem, as staggering as it might be, can be remedied by private investigators with professional backgrounds in federal law enforcement. These leaders in the criminal investigation community are well trained in asking probing questions, identifying/confirming the facts and corroborating allegations of costly and reputation-damaging acts of theft.
For many private investigation and corporate security firms, the first plan of attack in uncovering an employee theft may be to plant an undercover agent in a store or warehouse. A more effective approach is to conduct a series of interview and interrogation sessions using former supervisory federal agents who work independently in a full service private investigation firm.
Interview and interrogation practices have been relied on for decades by federal law enforcement agencies. The application of these same procedures and specialized training in dealing with employee theft often brings quick results. This approach of uncovering the facts takes far less time than using undercover agents.
With so much at stake, it is essential to use private investigators experienced in conducting an interview and interrogation session that parallels federal investigative standards and is acceptable in any court of law. This level of expertise is found among former supervisory agents who have worked for the FBI, DEA, IRS and Secret Service.
Could corporate crime be taking place in your business?