How documents’ digital DNA can help your case

Chris Rosetti decodes how metadata can be used to reveal information about a document that its author has unwittingly divulged.

Evidence, Detection, Document Examination, Investigation, Technology

The UK response to bribery: how do we measure up on a global scale?

The Bribery Act 2010 came into force with a fanfare in July 2011. Bringing the UK’s outdated laws up to the standard required by its OECD commitments, the UK Government promised a zero tolerance approach to bribery and corruption. With blanket bans on facilitation payments and corporate criminal liability for companies that failed to prevent bribery, the Bribery Act made the UK’s anti-bribery laws some of the strictest in the world. Yet two and a half years on, we have yet to see the first corporate prosecution. Together with the recently announced closure of the National Fraud Authority, the UK’s commitment to tackling bribery and corruption is now in question.

Hannah Nichols and Emma Gordon of Eversheds’ Fraud & Investigations Group take a look at the recent developments in bribery and corruption enforcement in the UK compared to the prosecution records of the US, China and Russia.

Surveys & Research, Bribery & Corruption, Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America

Further steps toward UK public register of company beneficial owners

The UK government will push ahead with plans to create a compulsory register of beneficial ownership information that will cover private companies, it announced on 21 April.

Legislation, UK Government & Public Sector, Money Laundering, Tax Fraud, Europe

EU financial watchdog lambasts European Commission corruption report

A withering attack has been hurled at the European Commission’s first European Union (EU) anti-corruption report (released in February) by the European Court of Auditors, the EU's financial watchdog.

International agencies, Bribery & Corruption, Europe

How hackers can help prevent attackers

Traditional audits test the performance of certain types of controls, but ethical hacking can identify cybercrime vulnerabilities that would otherwise slip through undetected. Paul Vlissidis reports on how ‘penetration testing’ may assist in both averting and investigating fraud.

Detection, Fraud (Risk) Management, Information & Systems Security, Prevention, Online Fraud

‘Politics’ blocking Europe-wide fraud public prosecutor

A new European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) could have to share its competences with national governments for “political” reasons, the EU’s senior anti-fraud official has predicted.

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, International agencies, Law Enforcement, Europe

FCA to probe fraud refund refusals by UK financial services

The UK Financial Conduct Authority has confirmed plans to investigate claims that some consumer financial services providers are unfairly failing to refund customers when they fall victim to fraudsters.

Plastic Card & Payments, Europe

Ethics in(to) finance

The reputation of financial services couldn’t be much worse. Moves are afoot to recast the values of the money business but can they succeed, wonders Robert Stokes.

Fraud (Risk) Management, Prevention, Whistleblowing

Protect and survive – cyber-defence now!

Twenty-four hours a day, every day, remote, faceless, technologically-expert criminals launch malware and blunter missiles like denial of service attacks at businesses, government agencies and individuals online. Cybersecurity is burgeoning in response, with standards and tools continually evolving to meet the dynamic threats. Robert Stokes scans the web – securely – and talks risk and strategy with those at the e-frontline.

Information & Systems Security, Surveys & Research

Collateral questions – costly answers: the case of the well-connected borrower

Asset recoverers estimate that a staggering 97% of all assets lost to fraud are not recaptured [1]. David Zweighaft reports on how forensic accountants assisted federal prosecutors in identifying and retrieving funds in two notorious embezzlement cases. [Part one of two case studies.]

Asset Tracing, Case Studies / Red Flags, Investigation, Psychology & Profiling, Confidence Schemes, Financial Instrument Fraud, Loan Fraud

Pressure gauge: facilitation payments under the UK Bribery Act

Strictly illegal under the Bribery Act, facilitation payments are an occupational hazard of doing business in many jurisdictions. Kevin Robinson, a litigation partner at Morgan Lewis, examines the Serious Fraud Office’s toughening stance towards these disbursements and how to work to minimise, if not eliminate, them.

Disclosure, Prevention, Bribery & Corruption, Europe

Cross-border currents – criminalisation of EU budget frauds to expand

The European Union (EU) is strengthening its commitments for member states to criminalise financial frauds that have an impact on the €135 billion annual budget.

Bribery & Corruption, Tax Fraud, Africa, Europe, Latin America & Caribbean

Consent of the principal: effect under the Bribery Act 2010

The Court of Appeal has lately ruled on whether the prosecution, in bringing a case under section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906, must prove that a principal consented to their agent giving or receiving a bribe. Katherine Buckle of QEB Hollis Whiteman and Vedrana Pehar of 2 Bedford Row study the decisions and how they bear on proceedings brought under the Bribery Act 2010.

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Bribery & Corruption

EU agrees tax evasion deal and sets sights on Switzerland

European Union member states hope to follow up the approval on 24 March of an EU directive preventing savings accounts being used for tax evasion, by concluding a similar deal with Switzerland.

Legislation, Tax Fraud, Europe

First DPA on the way?

We can expect the first deferred prosecution agreement “in the not too distant future”, the head of the UK Serious Fraud Office David Green said yesterday [24 March 2014].

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Disclosure, Europe

EU embraces cross-border investigation orders

European Union countries that have opted in to a new directive on a European Investigative Order (EIO) passed on 14 March, must now carry out investigations if requested by another member state.

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Law Enforcement, Legislation, Investigation, Europe

London insurance broker fined £315,000 for weak corruption controls

Despite two visits from the UK regulator and numerous warnings to the industry, Besso Limited was lax about how it shared commissions with third parties.

Prevention, Bribery & Corruption, Europe

More building blocks

In his second article on fraud in the construction sector, George McKillop of Haymarket Risk Management Ltd draws on his extensive investigations experience to run up some red flags and propose defence measures.

Case Studies / Red Flags, Fraud (Risk) Management, Prevention, Bribery & Corruption, Vendor, Supplier and Procurement Fraud

European cybercrime centre scores against credit card crime

The European Cybercrime Centre (EC3), created one year ago as a wing of Europol, has helped dismantle three international credit card fraud rings and assisted in two international ransomware investigations and several online child sexual exploitation cases, it and the European Commission announced yesterday [10 February].

International agencies, Law Enforcement, Online Fraud, Plastic Card & Payments