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NCJ Number: 200450 Find in a Library
Title: What Day Is It?: Using Simple Spreadsheet Software, You Can Quickly Convert Transaction Dates Into Days of the Week and Find Patterns of Fraud
Journal: White Paper  Volume:17  Issue:3  Dated:May/June 2003  Pages:13,15,17
Author(s): David G. Banks
Date Published: May 2003
Page Count: 4
Type: Instructional Material
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article explains how to use simple spreadsheet software to quickly convert transaction dates into days of the week and find patterns of fraud.
Abstract: Fraud examiners often are interested in when apparent fraudulent transactions occur. Establishing a correlation between transaction dates and, for example, the presence of an individual in a particular warehouse, data center, or bank branch can provide strong evidence that links individuals to crimes. Such an audit technique often requires determining the specific days of the week when questionable events have occurred. Matching the day of the week to a large volume of date data, however, can be a potentially time-consuming and complex task. This article explains in detail how to use spreadsheet software to make this task easier and quicker. The software used by the author is Microsoft Excel, because it is flexible and widely accepted. Excel makes the conversion of date data to day-of-the-week data a three-step task. In the first step, an Excel function, WEEKDAY, is used to convert each date into a number that represents the related day of the week. Because the digital representation of the days of the week is unfamiliar, a second function is necessary to convert the day numbers to the text day format that is familiar. This function is the TEXT function in Excel. Finally, the formulas that are used to make this conversion must be converted to text data to make the results more useable. Ultimately the spreadsheet functions yield a quick means of detecting day-related patterns in fraud and can convey the information in an easy-to-use format. 5 exhibits
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Auditors role in fraud detection; Audits; Computer software; Fraud; Fraud and abuse prevention measures; Fraud investigations; Investigative auditing procedures
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