Financial Accounting Blog

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Fraud. BW Online reports that there is a new movement of software that "crunches" data to determine if financial numbers are fabricated and if accounting fraud has occurred.
Benford's Law provides just one small example of the way in which technology used to uncover accounting fraud has been growing in both sophistication and popularity. The growth hasn't really been stimulated by technological innovation, which has mostly amounted to fine-tuning sleuthing programs so that they issue fewer false alarms, customizing such programs for use with new industries, and upping raw computing power so the programs can crunch more data. Instead, the boom is being fueled by accounting scandals, terrorism threats, and new regulations such as the Sarbanes-Oxley financial-disclosure law and the Patriot Act, which both require companies to be more vigilant about avoiding financial fraud and about keeping employees honest.

(posted by B. Piening)