Charity Fraud Prevention Week – Taking Action

Charity Fraud Awareness Week 2021TAKING ACTION

If you suspect that your charity has fallen victim to insider fraud you should act promptly.

  • Refer to your response plan which should explain how, when and by whom the suspected fraud will be investigated, reported and resolved. It might include engaging external professional support.
  • Report the incident to your relevant national law enforcement agency. In the UK this is Action Fraud (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (Scotland only).
  • Report matters promptly to your charity regulator. For reports to the Charity Commission for England and Wales treat it as a serious incident. Use the online form to make your report, stating what happened and how you’re dealing with it.

BUILDING YOUR CHARITY’S DEFENCES

Checklist – Ask yourself:

  • Do we have a workplace culture in which fraud is never acceptable and everyone knows it? (An essential part of preventing fraud is to have the right ‘tone at the top’.)
  • Do we talk openly about fraud and is it clearly explained in our anti-fraud, bribery and corruption policy?
  • Is a whistleblowing policy promoted and supported widely within the organisation?
  • Are we developing standard operating procedures that reduce risk and encourage honesty? Are we making sure they are being followed?
  • Do we perform pre-employment screening of new recruits and in-service checks for established employees? Do we expect our partners to do the same?
  • Are we sharing our knowledge with other organisations so that known fraudsters cannot simply job-hop?
  • Do we offer support to employees in difficulty? (Desperation and dissatisfaction are common causes of fraud.)
  • Do we keep registers of gifts, hospitality and conflicts of interest? Are they transparent and reviewed regularly?
  • Do we provide mandatory anti- fraud and corruption training?
  • Is there a response plan for when an insider fraud does happen?

Protect Your Business From Cyber Crime

Unfortunately, criminals will use every opportunity they can to scam innocent people and their businesses. They are experts at impersonating people, organisations and the police. They spend hours researching you for their scams, hoping you’ll let your guard down for just a moment.

How to protect your business

Stop

  • if you receive a request to make an urgent payment, change supplier bank details, or provide financial information, take a moment to stop and think

Challenge

  • it could be a fake – verify all payments and supplier details directly with the company on a known phone number or in person first

Protect

  • contact your business’s bank immediately if you think you’ve been scammed and report it to Action Fraud

National Cyber Security Centre

The National Cyber Security Centre also has advice on how to keep your business secure online