The cash flow of nearly a quarter of UK small businesses is under threat from losses due to staff theft or fraud. The findings from a UK-wide survey for Bank of Scotland Business Banking by the Opinion Research Business, reveal that 24% of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) – almost 900,000 across the UK – report having suffered staff fraud. Two per cent of businesses identify staff fraud as being a “frequent” problem for their businesses.

Perhaps not surprisingly, companies with more staff have greater problems. Whilst 19% of firms with fewer than 15 employees have experienced staff fraud, this figure more than doubles to 48% for businesses with over 36 staff. Interestingly, firms headed by men are more likely to experience staff fraud than those headed by women (25% compared with 18%)