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Six Common Myths About Fraud

NCJ Number
Journal of Accountancy Dated: (February 1990) Pages: 82-88
J T Wells
Date Published
7 pages
Certified public accountants need to be aware of six common myths about fraud if they are to be able to detect and control it.
The view that most people can resist the temptation to commit fraud is probably the major myth about financial crimes. However, fraud perpetrators come from all social classes, occupations, and economic circumstances. A second myth is that fraud is immaterial. However, most people who start committing fraud will continue. A third myth is that most fraud goes undetected. However, fraud is difficult to conceal, because the amounts involved grow over time and the perpetrator becomes careless about concealing the fraud. Other myths are that fraud is usually well concealed, that auditors have no ways of improving their efforts to detect fraud, and that prosecuting fraud deters others from committing it. Finally, statistics showing that the population is aging, that white collar criminals are older than other criminals, and that 40 percent of white-collar criminals are female suggests that white-collar crime will increase and require increased efforts at prevention and detection. Case examples.


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