Encyclopedia of Security and Emergency Management

Living Edition
| Editors: Lauren R. Shapiro, Marie-Helen Maras

Investigations: Employee Theft of Employer Property

Living reference work entry

Later version available View entry history

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-69891-5_87-3


Stealing, Use or misuse of an employer’s property or assets by an employee without permission.


Employee theft of employer property is a major issue for organizations (see, e.g., a 2017 article on.com, claiming a 50 billion loss per year for US businesses). Even though the general scope of the problem seems apparent, exact numbers of employee theft are difficult to obtain. The dark number for employee theft is high. One reason for this is the fact that much employee theft goes undetected or is erroneously defined as another loss (Retail Shrink). It may, for example, be unclear whether an item is stolen or just lost and if stolen, whether it was stolen by an employee or a customer (Consumer Retail Shoplifting). Another reason, however, is that many employers decide not to report the theft to the police, investigating the matter themselves instead (Meerts 2018b). This contribution starts with a discussion of the issue of employee theft, after which investigations...


Asset misappropriation Employee theft Internal investigations Corporate investigations 
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Further Reading

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of law, Department of Criminal Justice and CriminologyVrije Universiteit AmsterdamAmsterdamNetherlands