The concept of fraud is described in detail in the Bouygues Compliance Documentation and the Colas SA Compliance Procedures. It is important to note, however, that although the definition of fraud varies from country to country, it ALWAYS involves dishonesty and some form of deception. Essentially, fraud is when someone deliberately attempts to deceive someone else, acts dishonestly, or abuses his or her position to gain some kind of material advantage. It is usually carried out to obtain more profits, property, or services in an unjust manner. In the United States, you can also be prosecuted for just being careless or reckless in letting fraud take place – even if you didn’t commit the fraud yourself. There are many types of fraud, some of which are discussed below. Examples of fraud would be false claims, payroll fraud, financial fraud, etc.
Accordingly, we must always act fairly, truthfully, and with integrity. We must ensure that our books and records are accurate, complete, and never misleading. All expense reports should include items that you are entitled to claim and have been properly incurred while carrying out business on behalf of the Company. Likewise, we should always submit legitimate invoices to our customers and ensure that contractual claims are substantiated by adequate and truthful information.
ETHICS LEADERSHIP MOMENT: You overhear a colleague telling a vendor that she listed him on a receipt for a dinner last Friday. You also know that your colleague’s mother celebrated a birthday that same day. Your colleague then submits the receipt as part of her expense report. What do you do?
Answer: You have a good faith basis to suspect your colleague is cheating on her expense reports by claiming an item that was personal and then covering it up by using a vendor name. You should report the suspicion through any one of the avenues available – Ethics Manager, manager or Colas Ethics Hotline.