Small business losses to fraud – 100 times more per employee than the losses that large corporations suffer – are reportedly expected to diminish sharply in 2005 as their newly trained bookkeepers take over internal controls and fraud prevention.
In 2005, the training, until now offered by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers ( http://www.aipb.org/ ) to its 30,000 members, will be available to all bookkeepers as a self-study course.
“The course is part of our 25-year program to upgrade bookkeepers’ technical education,” says Steve Sahlein, co-president. “It was prepared by professional fraud examiners and focuses on how to prevent – or spot – credit card, check and vendor fraud, as well as employee theft and embezzlement.”
The more than 150 colleges and universities that prepare bookkeepers for AIPB’s national certification exam will also include fraud prevention and internal controls in their curriculum.
Sahlein says that in 2005, small businesses will benefit from the more than 100,000 bookkeepers that AIPB has trained in key areas such as payroll preparation, credit and collections, and ratio analysis of financial statements (which uncovers budding financial problems before they erupt).
“But companies that will benefit most will be those with certified bookkeepers because they are the best trained,” said Sahlein. “CBs are to bookkeeping what CPAs are to accounting – the cream of the profession.
“Not all bookkeepers yet know fraud prevention,” added Sahlein, “but in 2005 we expect to see many more train themselves to be their company’s firewall against fraud, embezzlement and theft.”
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