The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners noted in their last report to the nation that small businesses suffer "disproportionate fraud losses," when they become a fraud victim.
Part of the reason for this is large businesses employ people to deal with fraud. The other part of the reason is they can't afford the exposure (as well as) larger businesses can.
Rich Mintzer (Entrepreneur.com) did a pretty detailed article in January about how small business is targeted by fraudsters. He has some smart tips for business owners:
Smart Tip: Don’t ship any products to a buyer on a pre-paid basis unless you’ve done business with the company previously or can verify the legitimacy of its payment method.Rich's tips (with more detail), here.
Smart Tip: It’s better to be safe than sorry. Never send products or refunds to a first-time buyer until their check has cleared the bank.
Smart Tip: The bottom line is, if you haven’t seen a directory before and can’t verify that it’s actually distributed, you’d be wise to steer clear of any such offers.
Smart Tip: If it’s the vending machine business you’re interested in, do your own homework and contact companies you’ve done your research on. And be leery of local ads for new vendors that offer a toll-free number and a chance to make "big bucks."
Michael Webster, an attorney practicing in Toronto, has an excellent site, which educates all of us on business scams:
Misleading Advertising Law (Due Diligence for Income Earning Opportunities).
A little awareness and (due diligence) can stop most fraud dead in it's tracks!