Financial Fraud Investigations
Around 70% of companies surveyed have reported losses through at least one type of corporate fraud in 2013, according to an international report by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The previous year it was 61%.
Global fraud is on the rampage and the need for companies to turn to discrete corporate fraud investigation agencies like Blackhawk London has never been greater.
Often it can start with nothing more than a bad feeling about a set of events within your company – something doesn’t quite add up. Or, you’ve discovered some evidence to support fraud being committed against you and need some outside, but discreet assistance, to put the pieces together.
Fraud is all over the media. If it’s not a scandal over horse meat being passed off as beef, or a multinational drugs company being investigated over allegations of bribing doctors to buy its products, prepare to be shocked by the annual £90 extra in general insurance premiums that each British customer now has to pay to cover bogus insurance claims.
Other main services commonly used in conjunction with this service include:
Corporate & private fraud in many forms
Corporate fraud comes in all shapes and sizes: taking cash or goods, false financial reporting, money laundering, gaining access to dormant accounts under assumed names, false invoices, investment scams, any way one person can deceive another. And it’s getting easier.
Pressures are mounting on management to deliver, enter fresh yet often riskier markets, and cut costs. Companies are installing ever more complex IT systems but often without the security measures to keep pace with technology. The harsh economic climate is luring more individuals towards embezzlement and the more global an institution becomes, the greater the chance of poor communication and controls leading to lack of staff vigilance against fraud.
Fraud can happen in your company
Companies can no longer afford to take the view that “it can’t happen to us – we know all our staff”. Fraud is like a cancer: whether it’s stealing petty cash, under-reporting or embezzling, it can slowly strangle your ability to pay bills, order essential supplies, market yourself or even keep prized employees by upping their pay.
Costs can rocket because undetected company fraud gives you unreliable figures on which to base your procurement needs, production costs and sales forecasts and, at worst, your share price. And anyone receiving kickbacks to favour a particular supplier can ruin a company’s chances of picking the best- value bidder.
Fraud gnaws away at operating capital, let alone profits. If payments are missed, credit can get damaged irreparably, meaning more expensive loans or none at all. And legally, you might still have to pay pension contributions if a rogue accountant has not been paying in staff contributions.
The message is clear. Vigilance has to be constant and prevention is key – simple things like two signatures per cheque, internal controls but external audits across your business, warehouse security cameras, regular inventory checks. Promote a corporate anti-fraud culture. Be aware of people displaying characteristics such as excessive secrecy, closing ranks with some colleagues and not others, always blaming colleagues, missing the skills listed on their CV, and vendors who only deal with one person.
Time to turn to London’s fraud investigation professionals – Blackhawk
Then, if and when you suspect corporate fraud, get advice from a professional fraud investigation team. When you contact Blackhawk Investigations, we will talk through your concerns and the options available to your organisation and recommendations for moving discreetly at speed.
Internal company fraud can be committed in a number of different ways, including:
- Diversion of business
- Theft of confidential information (such as customer lists)
- Theft of goods
- Theft of money and assets
- Intellectual property appropriation
- Specific types of fraud such as Ponzi schemes, false accounting, identity theft or boiler room fraud
One of our skills is preserving digital evidence and recovering “lost” or hidden data in a format acceptable in court. Attempt this internally and you risk damaging often important legal evidence.
We can turn what may be just gut feelings you have into hard evidence or (best outcome!) dispel your suspicions. And it makes no difference to us if your suspects are internal or a competitor involved in espionage or hacking.
For more on company fraud and how Blackhawk London can help, check out:
We have a dedicated in-house legal team, particularly strong in eastern Europe. Through our international network we check out money, property, stocks and shares, intellectual property rights, employment law anomalies, offshore assets and directorships – all stock in trades of the clever fraudster.
We leave nothing untouched when tracing a debtor’s assets, offshore or not. We tailor our service to fit your needs and budget. We’ll interview witnesses, set up surveillance operations and yet all the time remain discreetly in the background. We always supply clients with a fixed fee proposal and a detailed report of our findings.
If company fraud is suspected we can help in devising a strategy to find out the facts in a rapid and cost effective manner. Our capabilities include:
Dealing with personal fraud or corporate fraud requires tough decisions. But if you feel something is wrong, follow your instinct, discuss it with us and we’ll give you a fair assessment as to whether you should hire us or not.
Suspect Company Fraud? Now’s the time to act. Call 020 7788 8983 and speak to a member of the private or corporate fraud investigations team at Blackhawk London today to discuss your situation in confidence.