Source: Kroll press release
Theft of information and electronic data at global companies has overtaken physical theft for the first time, according to the latest edition of the Kroll Annual Global Fraud Report. This year’s study, commissioned by Kroll and carried out by the Economist Intelligence Unit, shows that the amount lost by businesses to fraud rose from $1.4m to $1.7m per billion dollars of sales in the past 12 months – an increase of more than 20%. This year’s findings reveal that theft of information or assets was reported by 27.3% of companies over the past 12 months, up from 18% in 2009. In contrast, reported incidences of theft of physical assets or stock declined slightly from 28% in 2009 to 27.2% in 2010.
According to the 2010 survey, 88% of companies said they had been the victim of at least one type of fraud during the past year. Of the specific countries analyzed, China is the top market in which companies suffered fraud with 98% of businesses operating there affected. Colombia ranked second with a 94% incidence of fraud in 2010, followed by Brazil with 90%.
Information-based industries reported the highest incidence of theft of information and electronic data over the past 12 months. These include financial services (42% in 2010 versus 24% in 2009), professional services (40% in 2010 versus 27% in 2009) and technology, media and telecoms (37% in 2010 versus 29% in 2009).
The speed of technological developments poses new challenges in the fight against fraud. Nearly one-third (28%) of respondents cited information infrastructure complexity as the single most important factor in raising their exposure to fraud. However, despite the increased risks, only 48% of companies are planning to spend more on information security in the next 12 months, down from 51% last year.