I have always been a big believer in background checks for new employees. While many companies do this prior to hiring someone, some still do not and pretty much everyone relies on outsource firms to do the background check. Yesterday, January 30, 2012, the NY Times reported the case of a church worker within the Archdiocese of New York, accused of embezzling more than $1 million over seven years. This type of story appears periodically in different contexts. In this matter the Times reports that the woman was hired in 2003, without a criminal background check. The archdiocese has since discovered that she had been convicted previously of grand larceny in one similar matter and had pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in yet another matter.
In the current case, she is accused of writing checks to herself and then changing the internal records to indicate that the check was issued to a vendor. In the previous case, she had issued duplicate checks to company employees and then cashed them herself using check-cashing cards she had issued to herself.
- If you are not doing background checks on employees, start a program
- If you are doing background checks, review the process with HR and your vendor
As William Shakespeare said in Much Ado About Nothing: “Let every eye negotiate for itself and trust no agent; for beauty is a witch against whose charms faith melteth in blood”
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