The most common target of fraudsters is money. So as part of their efforts to combat fraud, risk managers need to closely collaborate with that part of the organization that handles this resource more than any other: finance and accounting.
Partner: Finance and Accounting
Main responsibilities: The finance and accounting department is responsible for multiple facets of the financial operations at a company, and in many cases it oversees the systems and processes related to these functions.
These might include:
- treasury management, including the level of risk a business can take on;
- corporate cost controls
- billing and credit controls
- appraising investments such as mergers and acquisitions
- managing a variety of tax issues
- making sure the company is complying with government and industry regulations
- preparing financial statements on a quarterly basis;
- managing and controlling inventory
- managing the payroll system in conjunction with human resources
- managing the company’s budget and assets
- managing cash flow and working capital
Who you should be working with: Ideally, fraud leaders should work in collaboration with the CFO, vice president of finance, or other senior-level executive. Others who might be involved in the fraud discussion include the financial controller, financial director, treasury manager, and accounting manager or supervisor.
How fraud can have an impact on this function:
The ways fraud can impact the finance and accounting functions within organizations are virtually limitless.
Finance departments face a large number of potential fraud risks. For example, fraudsters can fabricate invoices; make unauthorized cash transfers; steal the identities of employees and business partners and take over accounts for malicious purposes; or perpetrate expense fraud, mobile banking fraud, and social engineering fraud.
Executives in finance and accounting can play a key role in helping to reduce or eliminate fraud within an organization. But they face some challenges. According to a January 2020 report from Gartner, “How to Create a Payment Fraud Detection Strategy at the Organizational Level,” among the key challenges are the cost of fraud due to losses, and the cost of fraud management tools. There are also operational costs of fraud management.
These executives are seeking a better understanding of the overall fraud management costs the organization is facing, the expected return on investment from deploying fraud management tools, and the impact on the company’s overall profitability resulting from various approaches to fraud detection and mitigation.
Solutions to consider: Risk management executives can work with finance and accounting to help reduce or eliminate fraud or minimize the impact. Among the best practices:
- Work to educate finance and accounting staffers so they can easily spot potential fraud and take necessary action, such as alerting risk managers.
- Deploy automated technology tools such as digital identity to increase operational efficiency and monitor the ongoing behavior of identifying data elements to provide a holistic view of a user’s digital identity.
- In addition to authenticating the digital attributes of users via digital identity, authenticate behavioral biometrics. Use a layered solution model that addresses both identity authentication and transaction verification.
- Seek help from outside experts that have deep data and analytics resources to help identity and stop fraud.