If it’s an internal fraud investigation that’s decided upon, it should be conducted in a way, which builds credibility with the organization’s own employees and customers, media and outside regulators. Experienced fraud investigators and counsel must be retained to make sure that any investigative step exact to specifications of the law and any documentary proof is preserved properly.
A decision must be made early to identify those people who are responsible for investigation i.e. the manager or business owner, internal audit department, audit committee, directors, forensic accountant, outside counsel or a combination of all people mentioned above. This decision must be based upon different factors like size of the fraud, targets of investigation, overall risk to the firm and ability to capture the stolen funds. After the decision is taken, the party responsible must outline the investigation scope.
The person responsible must even outline how the proof shall be preserved. Since documentary evidence is keystone to most of the civil litigations, it has become essential to address this matter early on in fraud investigation. However, to this end, employees must be alerted for preserving the pertinent documents including the electronic proof. At this stage, the professional investigator conducting fraud investigation services may even hire someone qualified in electronic discovery and forensics if there is a substantial amount of electronic proof.
Depending on the kind of fraud, investigative efforts can include interviews with the vendors, customers or employees. A review of the pertinent records should also be undertaken. However, it is important for the management to engage a skilled professional who has conducted several fraud related interviews. Omega Investigations had professionals with years of experience in interviewing the witnesses in matters of employee theft in small and large organizations involving inventory, company funds and other kinds of assets and interests.