Breaking up the fraud threat

Thanks to the human factor, no technology or policy will be able to completely prevent fraud -- this is the message given out during the Asia Fraud Conference.

Even from the 18th century, there are countless examples of commercial fraud cases involving companies. With human greed, everybody is more interested in their profits rather than asking questions, pointed out Hri Kumar, partner, Drew & Napier, who was the keynote speaker at the two-day event which began yesterday in Singapore.

According to Kumar, a fraud survey report from KPMG conducted in Singapore showed the financial costs to companies as a result from fraudulent activities went up from S$1.4 million (US$913,000) in 2004 to S$4.4 million in 2007, while computer-related fraud occurrences jumped from 19 per cent in 2004 to 59 per cent three years later.

And the current economic climate is making things worse. "When times are bad, people will resort to means to make ends meet," said Larry Lam, managing director, McGuire Asia, which organised the event.

Alleviate the pain...and costs

But while fraud cannot be stopped, it can, however, be mitigated; a sentiment shared by the speakers at the event.