Someone who dishonestly gains a personal benefit by making others believe something that is not true.
This might involve providing false statements, deliberate misrepresentation of facts or circumstances, or withholding pertinent information for personal gain.
Recent case studies
- The CEO of an abalone farm provided false or misleading information to the company's board and potential investors to raise about $44 million from 1,400 investors over five years. This generally related to how well the abalone stock was performing by overstating the size of stock and understating losses. The CEO was found guilty of 17 counts of fraud under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).
- A business owner under-reported tax withheld from his employees to a total value of $173,819 to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). The business owner declared that he had deducted $84,158 in Pay As You Go (PAYG) tax from his employees' wages. However, the employee's tax returns for the period showed that $257,977 had been withheld from wages. He was found guilty of one count of fraud under the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).
- A welfare recipient received Centrelink benefits to which she was not entitled by claiming she was single when she was in a de facto relationship. The recipient lied to Centrelink about her circumstances on a number of occasions in order to perpetuate the fraud. These lies resulted in her receiving $19,589.47 in Newstart Allowance and $66,123.82 in the Parenting Payment Single. In addition, the recipient claimed she had undertaken study when she hadn't, which saw her receive $3,525.62 in the Pensioner Education Supplement. She was found guilty of five counts of fraud under the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).
The methods of the deceiver are countered by measures that support honesty, integrity, information sharing and verification.
Key countermeasures include:
- Declarations or acknowledgements
- A specific form, process or system must be used
- Requests or claims must meet specific eligibility requirements
- Mandatory information is required to complete the request or claim
- Requests, claims or processes are limited by parameters
- Information is verified
- Data matching
- Ongoing compliance, performance and contract reviews
- Staff are trained and supported to identify and report fraud and corruption
- Tip-offs and Public Interest Disclosures
- Reconciliation (accounting)
- Internal or external audits or reviews
- Fraud detection programs
- Penalties for fraud and non-compliance with rules, processes and expectations are enforced.
Other countermeasures include:
- Collaboration with strategic partners
- Legislation and policy
- Procedural instructions or guidance
- Help and support
- Staff are trained to apply correct processes and decisions
- Internal escalation procedures
- Prompts and alerts
- Duplicates are prevented, identified and corrected
- Data protected from manipulation or misuse
- Data analytics
- Automatic notification of high-risk activities and transactions
- Complaints about poor or anomalous outcomes
- Activity reporting
- Exception reporting
- Recovery and Debt Management.
Download an A3 printable summary of the fraudster personas. If you require these documents in a different accessible format please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.