News & Resources

Dangers of not ensuring accounts payable oversight

Mar 13, 2013 Dave King

Electronic payments continue to become more popular among businesses of all sizes, especially as this method can streamline the functions of accounts payable and receivable through automation. One of the more widespread uses of electronic payments in enterprise has been ACH cards and wire transfers for payroll and regular vendor transactions.

However, because automation has become so popular, hackers and identity thieves have turned to electronic corporate payments as a viable method of stealing funds. Businesses need to ensure that their systems are defended against cyber crime prior to launching an electronic payments strategy to avoid wire fraud and other devastating issues.

Office administrator pleads guilty
The Lincoln Journal Star reported that an ex-office administrator was recently put on trial in Nebraska for allegedly stealing $700,000 from her employer through a wire fraud scheme. According to the news provider, the court tried her for 15 counts of wire fraud , allegations that have spanned 15 years while the defendant was responsible for payroll during her tenure with the firm.

The source explained that Royann Schmidgall pled guilty to one charge, which helped reduce her sentence in a deal with the U.S. Attorney's Office. The U.S. District Court believed that she had paid herself for time off throughout the course of her tenure at the company, while the amount of unauthorized funds transferred into her account hit $695,523 over 15 years.

The Lincoln Journal Star noted that the charge she pled guilty to was for one instance of wire fraud in which she stole $8,000 by charging her employer $100 an hour for 80 hours that were not accounted for in her time off.

Cyber security software and adequate oversight tactics are essential components of business continuity plans today, as cases of ACH card and wire fraud that span over long periods of time can be devastating, as was the case with this trial in Nebraska.

Expert to keynote
The Merchant Risk Council recently announced that a leading cyber crime expert, Mish Glenny, will keynote the 2013 European Congress in April. According to the organization, Glenny will discuss some of the more crucial components of a strong cyber security strategy, as well as what businesses can do to reduce the threat of wire fraud and identity theft.

The firm noted that he will target online retailers specifically, as hackers continue to steal personal and corporate identities through e-commerce websites.