corporate fraud

Corporate Fraud: Common Schemes

Corporate fraud is a type of white-collar crime that involves illegal actions committed either by employees or contractors of a company. In this article, we examine the most common types of corporate fraud. 

Theft of Intellectual Property

A company’s most valuable asset is oftentimes its intellectual property and trade secrets. Employees or contractors with access to a company’s intellectual property may use their access to leverage the company’s valuable intellectual property for personal gain. This may take the form of providing information to a competitor or leveraging this information for a new position elsewhere. The Department of Justice has a dedicated task force to addressing theft of intellectual property.

Fake Employees

One common form of corporate fraud involves the creation of fake employees by a company’s payroll staff. After creating and paying fake employees, a wrongdoer then directs the funds to their own bank accounts. 


Embezzlement is a form of corporate fraud that involves diverting company funds for the wrongdoer’s own use. This type of fraud becomes possible if an employee has access to a company’s bank account. Both senior executives and lower-level employees may be able to embezzle from their employer. The risks to companies can run in the tens of millions of dollars.

Theft of Assets

An employee commits corporate fraud any time he or she steals equipment, materials, or anything else of value from his or her employer. Losses related to theft by employee can range widely depending on the value appropriated and the time the theft goes undetected.

Unauthorized Use

Another form of corporate fraud occurs when an employee uses company assets in a manner that is unauthorized, such as using a company condominium or company vehicle for personal use. Although this type of corporate fraud doesn’t involve theft, it does involve the misappropriate of items that don’t belong to the employee. This can be fraud.

Contact a White-Collar Crime Defense Attorney 

If you’ve been charged with a white-collar crime, you need an experienced white-collar crime defense attorney in your corner. At Griffin Durham Tanner Clarkson LLC, our white-collar crime defense attorneys will aggressively defend you against multiple types of white-collar crime accusations, including corporate fraud. In addition, our knowledgeable white-collar crime defense lawyers work throughout the United States. We can represent you regardless of where in the country you reside. Please contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

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