The 21st Minute


Tech Tip: Truth in Numbers

Fraudsters can be sneaky. While there are some legitimate reasons for employees to be listed in the customer master files, there are also potential fraud scenarios that have been associated with this as well. Cross-matching street address information can be problematic due to variations in punctuation and   spelling.

However, there are some @functions in IDEA that can be used to distill address data to just numbers contained in the address fields to help reduce variances and yield a higher percentage of true positives for further review.


  1. Open the Customer Master.IMD file.
  2. Append a new address field called Just_Numbers using the following equation: @justnumbers(Cus_Address).


  1. Open the Employee Master.IMD file.
  2. Append a new address field called Just_Numbers using the following equation: @justnumbers(Emp_Address).

From the File menu, select Join Databases.

  1. The Customer Master file should be the Primary database.
  2. The Employee Master file should be the Secondary database.
  3. Change the File Name to Match Just Numbers.
  4. Click the Match button to select matchkeys. Select the Just_Numbers field from both databases as the match keys.


Click OK to close this window.

  1. Select Matches only as the join method to be used.

Depending on the information available in the customer master data as well as the employee master data, analysts should consider other cross-matching opportunities. Analysts have had success cross-matching other information including tax ID numbers, customer phone numbers to employee primary and secondary phone numbers as well as cross-matching addresses to other addresses in the employee data such as the addresses of emergency contact persons.

Don’t forget the 20 Minute Rule: If it takes you more than 20 minutes to utilize any IDEA function,

Contact the IDEA Help Desk for assistance. 888.641.2800, Option 4 • [email protected]


Concept created by Mark Nigrini. Step-by-step instructions and screen shots provided by Don Sparks.

CaseWare IDEA , Tech Tip

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