Beebe and O'Neil

How much does employee theft cost U.S. businesses?

Businesses in Connecticut often employ security guards and surveillance technology to keep an eye on visitors and customers. Many of them fear that customers may steal from the business via shoplifting. However, employee theft costs companies too. According to CNBC, the estimate stands at $50 billion across the U.S. each year.

You may think that only big corporations are affected, but smaller businesses experience this too. It is often worse for small businesses because they are often already cash poor, or at the very least, do not have the deep pockets of bigger competitors. Many small businesses may also not have insurance policies that sufficiently cover their losses.

If a company detects or suspects that you have been embezzling money, they may take different approaches for restitution. Some business owners may immediately turn you over to the police even if they are not sure you are really responsible. In other instances, they may instead insist that you repay the money missing from the business. Soon after the first discovery, and certainly after it becomes a trend, companies tend to put preventative measures in place to stop or detect further theft.

When companies first notice a short-changing, they most often suspect cashiers and other lower-level workers. This can lead to false accusations. However, CNBC notes that sometimes it is the most trusted members of a team that are actually behind the missing dollars and cents.

In spite of this, many small business owners do not prioritize employee theft as a concern. When polled about the most important issues affecting the business, only 1% of respondents worried about crime or vandalism.

This article provides information on employee theft. It should not be misconstrued as or used in place of legal advice.

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