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Case Studies: Business

Background Investigations
Computer Investigations
Due Diligence

Ethics
Fingerprinting

Workers Comp
Worksite Injury
Workplace Fraud

 

Background Investigations

A client was considering hiring a new director for their medical clinic because of the increase in business they had experienced recently. The clinic's own research led them to a seemingly well-qualified candidate. The application process and personal interviews had progressed to the point where the clinic was almost ready to make an offer. Fortunately, they decided at the last minute that they should at least conduct a basic background investigation despite the phenomenal resume the applicant had been presented. Our investigators were able to uncover the applicant’s rather interesting past.  The applicant had previously been hired by a state mental hospital as their administrator however after several months (and some rather unfortunate happenings) the staff questioned his capabilities and credentials. He was discharged shortly after when it was learned that he was not a physician and had no medical education. (The hospital later admitted that they had never looked past the first page of his resume when they hired him.) Our investigation was able to determine that the applicant had been convicted of fraud in two different states for deceptive practices regarding his employment and age. He had spent at least forty (40) days incarcerated in two states and was also sued by one previous employer for the compensation he received while serving as the hospital administrator. He had made fraudulent claims on multiple state applications and attempted to implement state funded programs without proper authorization from the state administration.  Without our detailed search capabilities, our client could have made a rather costly mistake. RESULT: the client terminated contact with the prospect. They were spared possible lawsuits and embarrassment and now have a qualified director in place. Click here to learn how we can help you with your hiring process by knowing all there is to know about an applicant.

Pre-employment Background Investigation

One local business owner was going to hire a woman as an office manager (who would have direct access to incoming cash and deposits). The woman's resume looked sterling and the owner had committed to hiring her, but when we started searching into her background and found 11 outstanding warrants in another state for fraud. Result: financial disaster avoided for the short term. even though we drew out a plan for hiring a new manager, the business owner thought he knew best and didn't follow our advice. We later received a notice they had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. You can see what happens when you don't stay directly involved in your business affairs. Click here to learn how we can help you with your hiring process by knowing all there is to know about an applicant.

Post-employment Background Updates

An employer correctly felt that he should be conducting a background investigation on new employees, but he missed the boat when he forgot about the benefit of a post-employment investigations. Think about it, when a new employee is hired they don’t know anything about your business or any of the vulnerabilities that exist. They may be sterling employees, but once they see procedures used in the business and the associated vulnerabilities, they can become tempted, they can perpetrate their frauds and thefts. Unless youperiodically check up on them by conducting a Current Employee Backgroudn Investigation, you might never know what is really going on. One recent misappropriation case ($140,000 lost) occurred after the employee had been working for the company for almost 11 years. Result: a valuable lesson learned, but a little too late.  Click here to learn how our post-employment background checks can you’re your business money.

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Computer Investigations

Case #1

Unable to determine why business was declining lately, a business owner in the upper regions of the state uncovered information which led him to believe that one of his senior employees was approaching long-term clients with lower pricing and expanded services. The client had already talked to the local police and surrendered a computer containing all his client information. Local police were not able to examine the computer to determine if data had been accessed or removed, so the police forwarded the computer to us. We were able to examine the system and reported the results to the client. One of his managers had accessed the customer database recently and had deleted information about the customers. Tracking the computer logs and auditing edits of the software, we were able to establish when the data was accessed and who the person was that obtained the data. Result: The client received details about who accessed the computer and is still involved in civil litigation to resolve the matter. Click here to learn how we can help protect your business with computer forensics. 

Case #2

When two employees failed to show for work, business owners became concerned. Checking the offices, they found that the desks of the two employees had obviously been cleaned out and personal effects removed. Suspicious, the owners checked the office computers and found that the accounting and invoicing system had been altered and many documents were missing. Our examination of the computer systems established the dates the files were accessed and deleted which coincided with the last night the employees ‘worked late’. Faced a civil suit, the former employees admitted to stealing invoices, client lists, order history and other proprietary data with the intent of opening their own business and approaching the existing clients. Result: disaster avoided and reputation saved.  Click here to learn how we can help protect your business.

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Due Diligence

Our client is a prominent local law firm who represented an out-of-town client. The client was considering investing in a business in another state; however they had concerns about the validity of the business venture and the sources of the capital contributions by the other principals.  Our mission: find out how much money the other principals had access to and verify their business credentials. We were only able to find traces of limited funds in the United States. However using our international contacts and resources, we were able to determine the future partners had substantial resources in overseas holdings and had acceptable experience in the business in question. Result: the client is reportedly engaged in a successful enterprise. Click here to learn how we can find information you need to make a wise business decision before investing or partnering.

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Ethics

When a local business was promoting their ‘reduced cost’ on a popular “high energy” drink, we were asked to make contact with them and to purchase as much as we could. We were able to purchase a standard pallet for about $2,500. Our client was the manufacturer of the product who had exclusive control over pricing and distribution. Result: the manufacturer found another distributor. Click here to learn how we can find information you need when you suspect ethics have been violated or theft is occurring.

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Fingerprinting

Rather than having their employees take time away from the office to get fingerprints which were mandated by law, the business hired us to come to their office and fingerprint everyone. Result: an office that was able to comply with federal regulations with minimal disruption. Click here to learn more about our fingerprinting service.

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Workers Comp

Faced with an award of over a million dollars, a national insurance company felt there were plenty of red flags on the claim and asked us to conduct a surveillance to track the daily activities of a man who had claimed to have had his ankle crushed and was hardly able to walk. Our surveillance teams conducted over a dozen surveillances of the man’s residence. Even though he was observed conducting several activities around his house, we didn’t feel we had the evidence the client needed. Continuing our investigations we watched him slip off one afternoon to the local golf course. Watching the man from a distance we were able to record him playing golf until late in the afternoon before we discontinued our activities. Early the next morning, we returnedto the man's residence and found two rental moving vans present at the house. After notifying the client and coordinating our efforts, we maintained a continuous surveillance for the next 17 hours. Our efforts found the man climbing steps while carrying heavy loads, helping to load heavy objects as he walked up loading ramps and running across the street and yard when suddenly caught in a rain shower. We immediately provided our report and video to the client who was able to contact the man as he returned to his home state. Result: he lost the entire claim and was forced to repay the amount that had been paid to him earlier.  Click here to find how we can help you learn if a worker’s comp claim is a fraud.

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Workplace Injury

Faced with a continuing problem or employees feinting workplace injuries, a local company requested we conduct a surveillance of an employee who claimed a serious back injury and could not perform his daily duties. Our surveillance lasted 36 continual hours dur toof the location and inability to move around in the area. During this time, the employee was observed unloading a large toolbox and apartment sized refrigerator from his vehicle into a back-yard shop. Later he was observed loading several duffel bags into a vehicle. Continuing into the afternoon, the employee was observed leaving his house on his motorcycle and driving around on dirt roads near his house until nightfall. The employee was surprised the next day when representatives of his employer arrived at his house, retrieved the keys to his company vehicle and fired him on the spot. Result: another fraudster learns a lesson. Click here to find how we can help you learn if a worker’s comp claim is a fraud.

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Workplace Fraud

Case #1

When a local business owner discovered that his long-term office manager had embezzled $140,000 from him, we received the call. Our mission: find out if she had any assets they could recover and any other information that might be of value to the client. We found the manager had a local bank account with only a moderate balance ($7,000) but when we started searching, we found that she had “multiple” bank accounts in a previously unknown bank. Local police investigators were notified of the ‘hidden’ bank accounts, but declined to take any steps to seize the bank accounts and protect the ‘fruits of the crime’.  We worked with the attorney to get a court order restricting the banks from distributing any part of the accounts. RESULT: We were able to obtain a settlement for $135,000 including $7000 in cash, distribution of $26,500 from the manager's profit sharing proceeds, repayment of $50,000 from sale of the house and a monthly payment schedule. We're also recommending a ten year suspended sentence subject to the terms of our agreement. Click here to learn how we can help find answers when you suspect theft.

Case #2

Our client had received information about a possible fraud at their workplace. They were unable to locate any experienced investigators with fraud investigative experience, until they called us. We covertly met with the informant at least 8 times in several different locations over a period of several weeks to obtain the details of the fraud and the testimony that he/she could provide. We obtained over 97 sworn statements and conducted a variety of surveillances in addition to a series of interviews and a volume of searches through records and databases; we were able to turn a significant amount of information over to the client so they could file lawsuits in federal court for the approximate $4.5 million loss. Our investigator testified at a deposition for over 8 hours. At least 4 co-conspirators were named in the lawsuit.  Click here to learn how we can help find answers when you suspect fraud.

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Membership Arkansas Investigations Certified Computer Forensic Examiner /> National Council of Investigation and Security