This article originally appeared in Anderson Kill's Hospitality Alert (October 2013).
Employee theft is a significant source of loss in the hospitality industry. Reports have found that 34% of employees in the 18–29 age bracket believe that stealing from their employer is justifiable. It is believed that as much as one-third of all restaurant failures are due, in significant part, to theft by employees, and the total amount stolen industry wide, in restaurants alone, amounts to $8.5 billion in annual losses. A study commissioned by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners estimated that the median loss caused by occupational fraud was $140,000, and 20% of these losses exceeded $1 million. The numbers are clear: employee theft poses a serious threat to the hospitality industry.