'Nobody Will Find Out': Top Email Phrases Fraudsters Use

Employee fraud can be revealed by email monitoring programs. (Image credit: pzAxe | Shutterstock.com)

Criminals usually think they can get away with whatever misdoings they plot, but a new analysis of key email phrases used by employees committing fraud may alert authorities to their crimes — even before they can commit them.

Accounting giant Ernst & Young’sFraud Investigation and Dispute Services Practice, in collaboration with the FBI, developed email monitoring software to findthe top 15 words and phrases used by employees who commit fraud or other illegal acts, according to ComputerWeekly.com.

Some of the words employed by fraudsters are almost laughably obvious: "Cover up" is the most widely used phrase, followed closely by "write off," "illegal," "failed investment" and "nobody will find out."

The analysis also found that employees getting nervous about their activities will frequently use email phrases such as "not comfortable," "want no part of this" and "don’t leave a trail," according to ComputerWeekly.com.

Email monitoring software is increasingly used by firms looking to enhance employee productivity. Most of these software programs will also track employees' Internet use, Web searches and other computer activity.

Companies sometimes choose to alert employees that their computer use is being monitored, or they may use monitoring software on the sly. In either case, experts advise employers to check with their legal advisers to ensure they're in compliance with state and federal privacy laws.

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Marc Lallanilla
Live Science Contributor
Marc Lallanilla has been a science writer and health editor at About.com and a producer with ABCNews.com. His freelance writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and TheWeek.com. Marc has a Master's degree in environmental planning from the University of California, Berkeley, and an undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin.