Using Vehicle Software to Prevent Fraud

DataBridge MS Vehicle Software

Turning a profit is hard enough without having to contend with fraud. If you buy and sell truckloads of material by weight, there are a surprising number of ways you can be cheated. Vehicle-scale software with built-in security features can protect your profits by preventing fraud at your truck scale.

vehicle software
The stakes can be high. In a recent case, cheaters defrauded a major international agribusiness company of $2 million. The scheme involved a scale operator conspiring with suppliers to create bogus tickets for grain shipments that were never made. In this case, the theft continued for years. Without a system capable of detecting fraud, a company can do little except hope that someone notices a discrepancy in inventory levels before too much money is lost. While scale operators are in a good position to spot cheaters, they also have plenty of opportunities to cheat. By using DataBridge™ MS software and taking a few simple precautions, you can protect your business.

Beyond Passwords

Most software programs are limited to password protection. The problem with those programs is that anyone with a password is free to use or misuse the application. Although defining access levels for individual users helps, it will not stop the determined cheater from defrauding you.

It takes more than password protection to stop an authorized scale operator from cheating. DataBridge™ MS software has a tamper-proof audit log that provides a permanent record of all transactions and all changes to the database. It tracks activity at your scale and identifies the user who was logged in at the time. When scale operators cheat, they risk leaving a complete record of their fraudulent activity.

Using bogus tickets or tare weights is a common way to steal from a company. Instead of processing an accurate transaction for a load, a scale operator can reprint a ticket from a previous transaction. DataBridge™ MS software allows the person who issues payment for tickets to view a complete record of every transaction, including a record of how many times a ticket was printed. The software also stores a history of tare weights for individual vehicles to let you know if a scale operator is changing tare weights in order to shortchange the company.

Unattended weighing

vehicle software

Cameras can be set up to provide every transaction record with photographs that identify the vehicle and show its position on the scale.

Unattended scales are a tempting target for drivers who want to cheat. With no scale operator to keep them honest, drivers can use their trucks to manipulate weight readings. To decrease a weight reading, they position a truck with one or more axles off the scale. To increase a weight reading, they work with another driver who positions the front wheels of a second truck on the back of the scale.

There are several ways to prevent this type of activity. The software can be connected to traffic loops and photo-eye sensors that control gates to regulate traffic across a scale. It also has a feature that automatically aborts a transaction if a second truck drives over a traffic loop while a transaction is in progress. By using cameras, the software can capture photographs that show exactly how a truck is positioned at various stages of a transaction. Cameras can also identify trucks by focusing on license plates or drivers.

Catching cheaters

vehicle software

DataBridge MS software helps catch cheaters by using a weight curve to verify that each transaction was processed properly.

Cheaters have become increasingly sophisticated and hard to detect. Electronic devices are available to give truck drivers remote control of a scale. The driver simply pulls onto the scale and then uses the device to increase or decrease the weight reading.

To catch these cheaters, DataBridge™ MS software uses a weight curve. The software plots a graph of vehicle weight throughout each transaction. During a legitimate transaction, the weight will increase gradually as a truck pulls onto the scale and level off when the truck stops moving. If a driver or scale operator manipulates the weight electronically, the weight curve will show a spike up or down to indicate the sudden weight change.

No company is immune to cheating or theft. Use DataBridge™ MS software to ensure that your truck scale’s weighing transactions are trustworthy.

From the METTLER TOLEDO Vehicle Weighing News 11