Management-level staff commit most business frauds

Companies’ own managers have been unmasked as the biggest perpetrators of fraud on UK firms.

A study by accountancy firm KPMG shows nearly two-thirds of fraud by value is committed from within organisations, and management is the single largest group responsible.

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In Scotland, levels of fraud in the first six months of 2012 came down dramatically after a number of large illegal fishing cases, accounting for more than £91 million, distorted comparisons with last year. The figure stood at £1.2m, against £94.1m for the first half of 2011. The latest total is the lowest in a decade.

Ken Milliken, forensic partner for KPMG in Scotland, said: “The extent and impact of fraud perpetrated from within businesses has historically been masked by a handful of exceptionally large cases coming to court, but the fall in such ‘super’ cases now shines a spotlight on the chronic and pernicious threat to businesses.”

The largest group of perpetrators of fraud by value is management, making up 55 per cent of the cases included in the study.