Employee theft costs U.S. businesses millions of dollars every year. Whether it’s someone stealing a product or a manager writing a fraudulent check, it is unfortunately common for people to take from their place of employment.
It is important to be aware of the different ways dishonest employees can steal from a business so that you can be prepared and protect yourself accordingly. In this post, we will examine the different types of employee theft and give you 22 employee theft statistics to know in 2021.
Types of employee theft
Below are some of the most common types of employee theft:
Larceny: Larceny occurs when an employee takes cash or property from a company. For example, a cashier that steals from the register or a grocery store worker who eats food off the shelves.
Billing schemes: With a billing scheme an employee sets up fake vendor accounts to issue fraudulent payments to themselves.
Embezzlement: This is the use of your employer’s funds for any purpose other than the one which they are intended for. Embezzlement is usually committed by someone in a position of authority as these people are the ones with access to the business’ funds.
Time theft: Time theft occurs when an employee logs hours in which they did not work or when someone uses working hours to conduct personal affairs or anything other than the work they are being paid to do. One of the most common forms of time theft is “buddy punching” when someone else punches you in while you are not there.
Information theft: This is a common type of employee theft that occurs when an employee takes confidential company information for themselves, a competitor, or any other party.
22 employee theft statistics to know in 2021
How common is employee theft?
1. 37.5% of employees have stolen at least twice from their employer. (Statistic Brain)
2. 60% of employees will steal if they know they won’t get caught. (Source: FBI)
3. Employee theft costs are rising at a rate of 15% per year. (U.S. Department of Commerce)
4. Up to 60% of employee theft involves ongoing schemes that can range from two weeks to 20 years. (National Federation of Independent Business)
5. 59% of ex-employees admit to stealing a past employer’s sensitive information when leaving a job. (American Bar Association)
6. 25% of people admit to reporting more hours than they actually work. (Source: Software Advice)
7. 75% of companies lose money from workers “buddy punching.” (American Payroll Association)
8. 52% of employees steal office supplies. (Kessler International)
Demographic breakdown of employee theft
9. 59% of employee theft is committed by men and 41% is committed by women. (Statistic Brain)
10. 72% of all occupational fraud is committed by men. (ACFE)
11. Women commit 56% of all funds theft. (Hiscox)
12. 34% of millennials feel that stealing from their job is justified. (Service Management Group)
The cost of employee theft
13. 33% of all business bankruptcies in the US are caused by employee theft. (Statistic Brain)
14. Businesses lose $50 billion every year as a result of employee theft. (U.S. Department of Commerce)
15. The average case of retail theft costs $1,380. (Jack L. Hayes International, Inc)
Employee theft statistics based on industry and company size
16. 68% of employee theft occurs within companies with fewer than 500 employees. (Hiscox)
17. 43% of retail shrinkage is due to employee theft and not shoplifting. (Statistic Brain)
18. Only $30 million of goods lost to retail theft are recovered yearly. (SHRM)
Stats on employee fraud
19. Fraud costs companies up to 5% of revenue every year. (Association of Certified Fraud Examiners)
20. Employee fraud cases typically last 14 months before they are detected. (ACFE)
21. 44% of fraud cases occur at private companies, while 26% occur at public companies. (ACFE)
22. Financial statement fraud costs companies a median loss of $954,000 per case. (ACFE)
How a surety bond helps protect against employee theft
A fidelity bond can help protect your business against the unfortunately common incidents of employee theft. There are two main types of fidelity bonds worth considering.
Business services bonds
Business service bonds are used by businesses that perform work on a client’s premises to protect their client against any theft by the business’ employees. Examples of companies that can use this type of bond are moving and cleaning services.
If an employee were to steal from the client, the client can file a claim against the bond to seek reimbursement.
Employee dishonesty bonds
An employee dishonesty bond protects small businesses from theft, embezzlement, forgery, and other unethical acts by employees. They function similarly to an insurance policy. You pay a premium to get the bond and can file a claim when specified events occur.
EZ Surety Bonds offers a quick and easy way to get a bond to protect your business. You can apply online and buy your fidelity bond instantly.