A leading UK Private Investigator has found that more than three quarters of workers have stolen from their current or previous places of work.

Work TheftThe figures show that potentially over £432m of company goods, including laptops, confidential personal data, TVs, and even an office pet in one case are stolen in the UK each year. It is also clear that very few measures are in place across companies to prevent theft from happening.

Recent anonymous online research commissioned by Salgado Investigations of 1,476 British people has found that 78% have stolen from their place of work at some point in their lives. This means that with individuals admitting to stealing, on average, more than £920 worth of items throughout their careers, theft at work costs the economy nearly £432m each year. The research stipulated that office stationary did not count.

Those who denied pilfering from work however are certainly no angels, as 57% of people who haven’t yet stolen from a place of work said that they would if they thought that they could get away with it.

Jorge Salgado-Reyes, a leading Private Investigator is an expert in the fields of corporate and company theft, infidelity and person tracing with more than 18 years in the business, and has published the findings. Jorge commissioned the research to gain more of an understanding of Britain’s habits, and to highlight how companies can help turn this problem around.

Installing or more closely monitoring CCTV could be the saving grace for those companies who are noticing that their assets are dwindling. When asked, “what would deter you from stealing an item?” 38.1% of the participants admitted that video monitoring would be the main deterrent. This was followed by 19% claiming that law involvement would be the one thing to dissuade them, with just 2.4% worried that their mum could/would find out.

Jorge had the following to say, “In my line of work, you get used to shocking stories and facts, but these stats make for pretty scary reading. Companies are doing little to stop thefts of these kinds, with very few having deterrents such as monitored CCTV or robust asset management systems in place. The theft of confidential personal data has been in the media eye recently and for good reason – more and more companies are securing the services of Private Investigators like me to detect people committing often large-scale criminal acts of these kinds.

“It just goes to show that in today’s Britain, you really don’t know who you can trust.”
Amongst the stolen items anonymously detailed in the comprehensive survey were large sums of cash, alcohol, furniture, computer equipment and even one boss’ desk.