Following accounts receivable best practices is becoming increasingly important as more organizations have recently been found distributing fraudulent invoices.
According to an article from the Fox affiliate in Kansas City, Missouri, a California-based telecommunications company is under investigation for sending invoices to a number or organizations that it never provided services to. Brandon and David Bell, the two brothers in charge of the business, sent what they claimed to be promotional material disguised to look like invoices.
"The invoice looks real and asks the recipient to pay $425 for a telecom maintenance agreement," the article says. "Thousands of these invoices have been mailed out by a company called US Telecom, based in Ontario, California. Many recipients have reportedly paid the invoice, not realizing their organization never did business with the company."
This is a big problem for businesses, because many cannot afford the time to thoroughly examine invoices, so they are paid without receiving adequate attention from those signing the checks. The $425 bottom line figure was designed to show a potential cost of doing business with the company, but since many accounts payable professionals only gave it a quick glance, they accidentally mailed a payment to US Telecom.
It's also a problem for vendors because incidents such as this compromise invoice integrity. If businesses have to spend more time going over the details of each invoice to determine its authenticity, that will slow down the payment process, which can hurt both the customer and the vendor.
Working with a B2B payments provider will allow companies to acquire the payment solutions needed to process invoices correctly, thus preserving their integrity. By doing this, businesses can alleviate the risk of their invoices not being paid on time, helping them to improve their profitability.