Is Your Business at Risk for Gambling-Related Fraud? 6 Gotta-Ask Questions

Can your company afford to lose $500 today? What about $50,000? Gambling addiction is a leading cause in major fraud and embezzlement cases. Here are 6 questions Lancaster and Lebanon business owners and managers should ask themselves:

1. Do we have policies defining which gambling activities are prohibited in the workplace?

Many companies have policies regarding substance use on the job, but gambling often doesn’t receive the same attention. A gambling policy sets the foundation for protecting the business from gambling-related theft, fraud, or embezzlement. A policy typically states which types of gambling are prohibited in the workplace. It may also outline what disciplinary actions can be taken against those who commit violations.

2. Does the policy account for newer tech gadgets, like personal tablets or smartphones?

Even if you have a gambling policy, it might not reflect relatively new technology. Make sure the guidelines address employees’ use of their own devices to gamble on company time or property.

3. Are supervisors, managers, and HR personnel trained to identify potential gambling problems in employees?

People struggling with substance addiction often (although not always) exhibit physical signs of their condition. In compulsive gambling, however, there are few physical tip-offs. Train workplace professionals to identify the signs of problem gambling, including:

  • Decreasing workplace performance
  • Asking for pay advances or requesting pay in lieu of sick days
  • Increasing tardiness or absenteeism
  • Taking the lead regularly to organize sports pools, lottery purchases, or other gambling-related activities
  • Owing money to co-workers
  • Experiencing mood swings related to winning or losing

Find out if someone you know is at risk by taking the simple quiz on the SafeStakes.org homepage.

4. Does our workplace block gambling websites from business-owned computers and devices?

You may already have software in place to block sexually-explicit sites. Consider adding blocks that prevent employees from accessing online gambling as well.

5. Do we have a corporate culture that embraces gambling?

The corporate environment can actually feed into illicit gambling-related activities: perhaps the business regularly entertains clients at a Pennsylvania casino, or the office makes a big, coordinated deal out of March Madness every year. Finding alternative ways to interact with clients socially or build employee morale will send the message that gambling isn’t welcome during working hours.

6. Do we have the financial processes in place to protect ourselves from embezzlement?

When it comes to running a small business, it’s not uncommon for people-power to be at a premium—that means one person might oversee all money-related activities, from signing checks to placing purchase orders.

Protect your company by implementing the checks and balances that make it less vulnerable to a lone employee’s illicit actions. Taking simple steps, such as requiring dual signatures on checks or regularly auditing petty cash, will reduce your exposure.

Learn More About How to Protect Your Bottom Line:

How to Talk to an Employee with a Gambling Problem

Keep Problem Gambling Out of the Workplace- Tips to Share with Employees

Gambling Addiction Treatment Providers in Lancaster, Lebanon, & Surrounding Areas

Compass Mark shares compulsive gambling education, prevention, and treatment resources with Lancaster and Lebanon businesses. Call us at (717) 299-2831 to learn more.

 

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