Prosperident Pulse # 54 Feb 2017

Prosperident’s Dental Prosperident Pulse
Issue #54 — February 2017
In This Issue:
  • Embezzlement Investigation’s “First Family”
  • Upcoming Speaking Dates
  • A note from our CEO

Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”.  And it’s never boring!

Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
Feb 4 Hinds Academy, Houston TX
Feb 9 Esca Rosa Dental Society, Pensacola FL
Feb 22 San Diego AGD, San Diego CA
Feb 23 Ortho2 UGM Anaheim CA
Feb 24 Chicago Midwinter Meeting, Chicago IL
Mar 3 Dolphin Management User Meeting, Nashville TN
Mar 9 Greater Philadelphia Valley Forge Dental Society, Philadelphia PA
Mar 10 Pacific Dental Conference, Vancouver BC
Mar 17 Dr. Michelle Haddad Memorial Scholarship Lecture New Hartford, NY
Mar 21 Greater Woonsocket District Dental Society, Providence RI
Apr 4 Texas Dental Meeting, San Antonio TX
April 7 Upper Island Study Club, Comox BC
Apr 28 Keely Dental Society, Hamilton OH
May 4 Atlantic Canada Seattle Study Club, Halifax NS
May 4 Texas Dental Meeting, San Antonio TX
May 10 Tax Matters For Dentists, Toronto ON
May 12 Tax Matters For Dentists, Ottawa ON
May 25 Patterson Dental, Nashville TN
Aug 25 Kentucky Dental Association, French Lick IN
Sep 22 Patterson Dental, Houston TX
To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.

Meet an Investigative “Top Gun”

Wendy Askins is one of Prosperident’s most senior investigators.  In addition to her MBA, Wendy holds the Certified Fraud Examiner designation, which is the “gold standard” for fraud investigation.
Wendy heads Prosperident’s specialized group that investigates embezzlement committed against orthodontists and oral surgeons.  She is also an in-demand speaker for these groups.
Wendy also holds the distinction of having more commendation letters from clients than any other investigator.
We are definitely glad to have Wendy in our cadre.

Did you miss a previous newsletter?  We archive them here.
Doing Backups Properly

We all know that data is important, and we need to back it up.  Whether a hard disk stops working, or your network has been invaded by “ransomware,” having a proper backup can definitely save your bacon.
When we examine someone’s practice for embezzlement, we start by making a duplicate of their practice management software in our lab.  This allows us to do our work unobtrusively and isolated from the changes that take place daily in “live” software.
Normally our technical staff connects to the client’s server over the internet and uploads what we need to our lab.  However, occasionally we receive a disk drive on which our client has made a backup.
Overall, our experience with these backup media is not good.  It is common for us to receive a backup containing only empty folders.  At other times, we receive an “incremental” backup (i.e., only files changed since the last backup).
Obviously, if you are using cloud-based practice management software, you don’t need to worry about this; for the rest of us, there are a few rules to follow.

Meet An Embezzler — Washington’s Patricia Hart

Early in 2016, Patricia, of Hoodsport WA, found herself charged with embezzling more than $300,000 from the practice in which she worked over an eight-year period.
We profile Patricia, and about 400 other embezzlers, in our Hall of Shame.  Wondering if an embezzler is working for you? Check it out here —

A Note From Our CEO

Last week, I got an interesting phone call.  The call came from an embezzler who is profiled in Prosperident’s Hall of Shame.  She had been caught embezzling about seven years ago.  At the time, she had managed to pay back the stolen funds, and for that reason did not spend time in prison.
The caller was upset because the owner of the practice in which she worked had seen our Hall of Shame, and suddenly became aware of his office manager’s “baggage.”  The doctor fired her immediately.
I certainly understand how someone, believing that she had put her past behind her, was quickly brought back to reality when losing the job she has held for five years.
The caller explained the circumstances that caused her to embezzle — she married at a young age, quickly had two children, and was then in a position where her husband was not contributing financially.  As she put it to me, she had to decide between feeding her kids and making the mortgage payment.  So she embezzled to survive.
She tells me that since that time, she has gotten back on her feet financially, and the pressures that caused her to embezzle are no longer there.  She spoke with obvious pride about the improvements she made in the practice, and how she has turned her life around, and was bitterly disappointed that her doctor’s perusal of our website brought it crashing down.
I am very much in favor of giving people a second chance.  I would not be where I am today if I hadn’t been the recipient of forgiveness on several occasions.  However, unlike my caller, I had earned my forgiveness by being open about my misdeeds.  In contrast, she began her new “life of honesty” with a falsehood.
My suggestion to my caller was, when seeking her next position, to be open about her past, and to show a prospective employer the benefits of hiring someone like her; who better than she to protect their next boss from embezzlement?
This story also one again shows the poor job that most dentists do when vetting prospective employees; a proper background check at the time of hiring would have allowed her ex-boss to be aware of her background at the time of hiring instead of finding out with a shock five years later.
Thanks for reading.

David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident is the world’s largest firm investigating financial crimes committed against dentists.
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