TV Program Dramatized The Threat Of Business Embezzlement

By Eric Jilson

In a recent television program, the show dramatized the threat of business embezzlement revolving around the trusted employee, one particular episode portrayed an erring accountant finally put in his place by the company purchase of an unbeatable machine. The dishonest human bilked by automation. There are undoubtedly some applications of automation which would have such a result. As yet we have little information on that subject, though we have treated with the general subject of automation in small business elsewhere.

At this time, however, we have our reservations. These machines do not work by themselves. Given a dishonest "programmer" or "feeder" it seems to us that the machine might possibly compound the felony, hiding it still deeper from sight. Crooks are invariably ingenious enough to master such situations, overcome the obstacles involved, and capitalize on any new opportunities presented.

That, as a matter of fact is the heart of the problem: crooks are ingenious and there are plenty of them. The most perfect sucker for an able embezzler is the businessman who insists on believing that most people are honest. They are, but the unwavering application of that fine belief to daily business situations can only result in certain loss, sooner or later, discovered or undiscovered. How many businessmen who fail ever really know whether or not they were victimized by trusted employees?

There is another attitude, just as ethical, more efficacious too. Do not place temptation in the path of the weak. If you wish to be highly moral about it, consider the possibility of giving to a good charity whatever you might save by judicious caution. Most of the money tapped from tills does not go for an extra bottle of baby's milk at all. Rather it can be found making its way to the race track and eventually into the government's take there. If you wish to contribute to the public welfare in that fashion, go ahead, but don't fool yourself. Most crooks waste the money they steal on high living. They are not to be pitied, just stopped.

Continued ostrich-like thinking on the part of the owner of business leads to petrified ignorance of the continually developing new ways of criminals. You had best start paying some attention to the matter now. If the future brings a crook into your life you might be able to recognize him ahead of time. - 32534

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