The Worldcom Fraud Case

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Background WorldCom, once known as one of the most powerful telecommunication organizations of the world, is now studied as a case of a fraudulent company that carried out unethical financial activities to cover its weakening position in the market. After some aggressive investment decisions, the company started to witness huge financial pressure. The management used various forged accounting entries to conceal its weakening position. Cynthia Cooper, Vice President Internal Audit, discovered the unethical activities and raised the issue with the management and relevant departments and received bitter responses. She carried out internal audits in her own capacity with her colleagues and compiled evidence against fraudulent activities. The Core…show more content…
This three element fraud is often referred as a fraud triangle by the researchers (Cohen, Ding, Lesage & Stolowy, 2010, p. 276). On the other hand the theory of planned behavior focuses on the intentions behind the planned behavior. Ajzen (1991, p. 188) explains this as “attitude toward the behavior… refers to the degree to which a person has a favorable or unfavorable evaluation or appraisal of the behavior in question”. Cohen, Ding, Lesage & Stolowy (2010) have combined the fraud triangle and theory of planned behavior to understand that how the two theories can be collectively studied to find out the reasons behind the unethical activities that results in corporate frauds. Cohen, Ding, Lesage & Stolowy (2010) in their work studied various organizations including WorldCom and identified following: • WorldCom’s management had an excessive interest in maintaining the entity’s stock price and earning trends (p. 287). • The CEO personality influenced the CFO of the organization (p.

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