Q&A: Corporate Fraud and Corruption in Pakistan

Corporate fraud and corruption in Pakistan is widespread (Rose-Ackerman, 1997, p. 4), particularly in the government and police forces. However by 2013 the country had improved by 12 indices compared to its previous rank – in 2012, 139 out of 174; in 2011, 134 out of 182; in 2010, 143 out of 178 countries. And in 2017, Pakistan saw a significant improvement in its statistics, with the Corruption Perception Index by Transparency International ranking the country 117th out of 180 countries. However Transparency International latest report (Jan 2020) indicated that Pakistan is a more corrupt country than it was in year 2017 –  ranking 139 out of 180 countries in in 2019. There is a need to reform accountability and anti-corruption policies in Pakistan. Read the answers to the following questions:

  • To what extent are boards and senior executives in Pakistan taking proactive steps to reduce incidences of fraud and corruption from surfacing within their company?
  • Have there been any significant legal and regulatory developments relevant to corporate fraud and corruption in Pakistan over the past 12-18 months?
  • When suspicions of fraud or corruption arise within a firm, what steps should be taken to evaluate and resolve the potential problem?
  • Do you believe companies are paying enough attention to employee awareness, such as training staff to identify and report potential fraud and misconduct?
  • How has the renewed focus on encouraging and protecting whistleblowers changed the way companies manage and respond to reports of potential wrongdoing?
  • and much more…

To what extent are boards and senior executives in Pakistan taking proactive steps to reduce incidences of fraud and corruption from surfacing within their company? 

CRI Group: Rising fraud risks have driven companies to establish the right steps to prevent fraud and corruption from surfacing. Following through with a focused trajectory ultimately also ensures failsafe protections are put in place, which will guard against scandals or negative publicity, while minimising risk exposure. There is quite a notable empirical rise in the frequency of companies conducting background screenings to nip corruption in the bud. Though checks can vary in nature, enforcing internal controls by implementing ISO strategies can bring pivotal change to a company’s strategy.

Have there been any significant legal and regulatory developments relevant to corporate fraud and corruption in Pakistan over the past 12-18 months?

CRI Group: Hard-line anti-fraud and anti-corruption policies are becoming more commonplace. Companies can face hefty fines for breaching the statutory parameters set forth by regulatory authorities. Transparency International is also driving many GCC countries to improve their anti-fraud and corruption provisions. Public participation and whistleblower tip-offs have also contributed to the monitoring process, thus encouraging the establishment and sanctioning of management systems designed for anti-corruption purposes.

When suspicions of fraud or corruption arise within a firm, what steps should be taken to evaluate and resolve the potential problem?

CRI Group: Vigilance from compliance professionals must ensure that fraud is detected within companies. If such suspicions are aroused, a prompt response strategy must be put in place. However, if the suspect is ultimately found innocent, it may dampen employee morale and affect the company’s credibility and reputation. Setting up a committee is an integral step to helping companies investigate any potentially fraudulent activity, the quorum of which should be comprised of senior management, finance, compliance and HR professionals. In the interest of avoiding any internal conflicts of interest, an independent investigation company should be employed to conduct due diligence on the suspect and share the report with the committee for immediate action to be taken against the suspect, if proven guilty.

Do you believe companies are paying enough attention to employee awareness, such as training staff to identify and report potential fraud and misconduct?

CRI Group: Previously, these areas were untouched but now the picture has changed, and with the changing scenario comes rapid evolution. Increasing global compliance requirements and awareness regarding corruption have increased employer awareness. Essentially, compliance professionals are now increasingly required to have adequate and up-to-date knowledge of anti-bribery and anti-corruption practices. Therefore, compliance and HR teams are ensuring the maintenance of well-versed and explicit policies for dealing with misconduct and fraud cases. It is now also a norm to see frequent awareness sessions and dedicated training sessions conducted to ensure compliance with these policies within the corporate realm, particularly in conjunction with certification bodies for hands-on training from experts.

How has the renewed focus on encouraging and protecting whistleblowers changed the way companies manage and respond to reports of potential wrongdoing?

CRI Group: Whistleblowing is regarded with increasing importance by many companies, and this is then communicated during the onboarding process to ensure awareness of potential risk areas and wrongdoing. The most important aspect of this would be to ensure clarity on the whistleblowing process itself. Confidentiality and privacy security assurance to whistleblowers is, above all, what would boost employee confidence to responsibly partake in helping to safeguard the company’s integrity by blowing the whistle without the fear of inviting any undesirable impact, such as jeopardising their job security.

Could you outline the main fraud and corruption risks that can emerge from third-party relationships? In your opinion, do firms pay sufficient attention to due diligence at the outset of a new business relationship?

CRI Group: The ‘Pandora’s box’ of corporate fraud and corruption may comprise issues pertaining to insurance claim fraud, investment ‘black holes’, ghost companies and criminal and civil litigation precedent, among others. There is a greater need for third-party risk management services due to the rapid expansion of companies.

What advice can you offer to companies on implementing and maintaining a robust fraud and corruption risk management process, with appropriate internal controls?

CRI Group: Risk management is an essential part of minimising the costs that can arise in the long term due to losses and falling prey to fraudulent practices in the corporate realm. This can be implemented through a resilient management system that has been designed to specifically target any loopholes and any roadblocks, the impact of which can often be greater than anticipated, rattling the company and causing harm that could lead to lawsuits, unanticipated monetary and financial losses and hefty fines imposed by regulatory authorities, from which the company may never recover.

Speak up – report any illegal, unethical, or improper behaviour

If you find yourself in an ethical dilemma or suspect inappropriate or illegal conduct, and you feel uncomfortable reporting through normal channels of communication, or wish to raise the issue anonymously, use CRI Group’s Compliance Hotline. The Compliance Hotline is a secure and confidential reporting channel managed by an independent provider. When reporting a concern in good faith, you will be protected by CRI Group’s Non-Retaliation Policy.

About CRI Group

Based in London, CRI Group works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence, Compliance Solutions and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 19600:2014 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

Download 2018 annual reviews by CRI Group.

Click here to download the review of UAE
Click here to download the review of UK
Click here to download the review of Pakistan

CRI Group was included in the 2018 Annual Review: Pakistan Corporate Fraud & Corruption, published by Financier Worldwide Magazine. The above is based the 2018 Financier Worldwide reprint (download here).

 

FAQ: Employment Screening

Want to know what types of red flags are most often found on résumés and employment applications? CRI Group’s EmploySmart™ experts provided some statistics on their latest pre- and post-employment screening engagements, and they give insights into where companies are most vulnerable in the hiring process. The operations team found that providing incorrect employment details is the most common red flag, as it was uncovered in about 4.5 per cent of background screenings. This is followed by providing incorrect education degree details as well as having adverse media (unfavourable news or online mentions), both at 2.33 per cent.

Most employers would probably say that when it comes to educational background, the only thing worse than providing incorrect degree information would be outright claiming a fake degree – which occurred in nearly 2 per cent of cases. Other red flags included having a criminal record (1.5 per cent), a civil litigation record (1.27 per cent), and providing a fake address (also 1.27 per cent). To round out the findings, the operations team found bankruptcy records, fake certificates and negative references among 0.85 per cent of those screened.

Get answers to frequently asked questions about background checks / screening cost,  guidelines, check references etc. This eBook is a compilation of all of the background screening related questions you ever needed answers to:

  • Does a candidate have to give consent to process a background check / screening?
  • How long does it take to conduct a background check?
  • When should I conduct pre-employment checks?
  • How often should i screen employees?
  • How to collect references and what to ask?
  • How much does it cost to conduct a background checks?
  • What is he difference between employment history verification and employment reference?
  • How do I check on entitlement to work?
  • How to conduct identity checks?
  • What will a financial regulatory check show?
  • Is it possible to identify conflict of interest during checks?
  • What is a bankruptcy check?
  • What about directorships and shareholding search?
  • Can I have access to a criminal watch list?
  • Anti-money laundering check?
  • Can we conduct FACIS (fraud and abuse control information system) searches?
  • … and MORE!

Taken as a whole, is the perfect primer for any HR professional, business leader and companies looking to avoid employee background screening risks. It provides the tools and knowledge needed to make the right decisions.

Download your “Employee Background Screening FAQ” FREE ebook now!

FAQ employee background screening

FAQ employee background screening

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About CRI Group

Based in London, CRI Group works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence, Compliance Solutions and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 19600:2014 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

Background Screening Red flags: Numbers Don’t Lie

Want to know what types of red flags are most often found on résumés and employment applications? CRI® Group’s EmploySmart™ experts provided some statistics on their latest pre- and post-employment screening engagements, and they give insights into where companies are most vulnerable in the hiring process. background screening red flags

The operations team found that providing incorrect employment details is the most common red flag, as it was uncovered in about 4.5 per cent of background screenings. This is followed by providing incorrect education degree details as well as having adverse media (unfavourable news or online mentions), both at 2.33 per cent.

Most employers would probably say that when it comes to educational background, the only thing worse than providing incorrect degree information would be outright claiming a fake degree – which occurred in nearly 2 per cent of cases. Other red flags included having a criminal record (1.5 per cent), a civil litigation record (1.27 per cent), and providing a fake address (also 1.27 per cent). To round out the findings, the operations team found bankruptcy records, fake certificates and negative references among 0.85 per cent of those screened.

Deception among job seekers is real

Anytime someone intentionally provides false information in their résumé, they are committing résumé fraud – usually in the hopes of gaining a competitive edge in the hiring process. “There are even business services out there that will knowingly assist candidates with changing their résumé in this way, such as offering advice on how to hide employment gaps or how to add false information that looks realistic. Some will even provide fake transcripts and fake letters of recommendation” (HR Daily Advisor, 2018).

The same goes for fabrications on an application. It can occur anywhere in the process, and the candidate will likely continue to misrepresent themselves in the interview process to maintain their fraud. As mentioned above, helping candidates embellish or even fabricate credentials has become a business unto itself. “On the surface, these appear to be candidates taking desperate measures. But the candidates themselves may not be the only ones at fault. As recruitment has migrated online and become automated … opportunities for scammers have arisen. Professional recruiters, who get placement fees when they land candidates in jobs, have a clear incentive to game the system, Zhao says. They are ‘middlemen who can make significant profit by misrepresenting clients’” (Inc.com, 2019).

There is only one clear remedy and protection method to combat this type of fraud: thorough and comprehensive background checks. Most organisations, however, don’t have the time, resources, or the expertise to conduct the needed level of background screening on their own. This is where CRI® Group’s EmploySmart™ comes in. The robust pre-employment background screening service helps organisations worldwide avoid making uninformed and potentially harmful hiring decisions. As a leading provider of specialised local and international employment background screening, CRI® Group’s uses EmploySmart™ to provide risk mitigation and give business leaders confidence in their hiring process. EmploySmart™ includes a thorough menu of screening that fulfills your organisation’s risk management needs. These checks include the following:

  • Address verification – one of the red flags discussed above.
  • Identity verification – what are they hiding? Falsifying one’s identity is a major red flag.
  • Previous employment verification – candidates might claim false employment to beef up their résumés.
  • Education & credential verification – screeners check degrees and education history.
  • Local language media check – what is uncovered about the candidate in news reports?
  • Credit verification & financial history – candidates who conceal financial problems can be a fraud risk (local privacy laws apply).
  • Civil litigation record check – lawsuits can indicate red flags, background screening will uncover the details.
  • Bankruptcy record check – when hiring someone for a financial or leadership position, it’s important to know if they have bankruptcy filings.
  • International criminal record check – checking criminal records is essential for the safety of your employees and your business.

These are just a few of the essential checks that are part of the EmploySmart™ process. CRI® Group’s network spans the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Asia-Pacific for providing international risk management, background screening and due diligence solutions provider. Don’t tempt fate and invite red flags into your business by making risky hires. The proper pre-and post-employment screening will uncover those hidden things that a candidate might not want you to know. Contact CRI® today and learn more about how EmploySmart™ will help provide your organisation with that extra layer of protection you need. Get a FREE QUOTE now!

Who is CRI® Group?

Based in London, CRI® works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence, Compliance Solutions and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI® also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI® launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 37301 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI® Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

Fraud Advisory Panel UK counter fraud 2019 report is out!

Fraud poses a major threat to the UK and the world. The slow progress in fighting fraud in 2019 was evident to all of us with the never-ending stream of news stories documenting bribery and corruption cases around the world in 2019. We documented each with our article on Top 10 Bribery and Corruption Cases of 2019  where we count down the stories:

  • Juniper Networks
  • Alstom
  • Microsoft
  • KPMG
  • Samsung Heavy Industries
  • Fresenius Medical
  • Walmart
  • TechnipFMC
  • Ericsson
  • Unaoil

But these cases helped some of the welcome signs that government and law enforcement were beginning to ratchet-up their interest in fraud with new regulatory updates. 2020 was looking promising to all fraud fighters around the world. Unfortunately COVID-19 pandemic has turned the tide in the fraudsters’ favour – creating the current environment of fear, confusion and economic uncertainty in which fraudsters thrive.

The latest Fraud Advisory Panel’s report, The calm before the storm UK counter fraud in 2019 highlights all of these and more. According to the report the SFO continued to conclude
successful deferred prosecution agreements (though still without converting any of them into individual prosecutions):

  • 53% conviction rate (17 defendants out of 32)
  • 11 criminal investigations opened
  • 8 defendants charged (investigations closed without charge – 14)
  • 16 defendants awaiting trial
  • £3.9m funds recovered
  • 11 new confiscation orders (combined value £4.1m)
  • £1.5m for the first Account Forfeiture Order
  • 70 total caseload

And all of the stories help illustrate the need for organisations to have proper controls in place to prevent bribery and corruption. A certification such as ISO 37001 – Anti-Bribery Management Systems standard can provide a comprehensive approach to mitigating bribery and corruption risk. Organisations of all sizes and industries should take steps now to ensure that they don’t end up on a future list of top bribery and corruption scandals. Only a well resourced, cross-sector, intelligence-led response can tackle fraud.

Staying one step ahead of any critical risk to your organisation is part of being an effective business leader. For assistance in developing and implementing a fraud prevention strategy, contact us today or get a FREE QUOTE now!

Who is CRI Group?

Based in London, CRI Group works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 19600:2014 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

Fraud Advisory Panel have set up a COVID-19 fraud watch group

The Fraud Advisory Panel have set up a COVID-19 fraud watch group.  A cross-sector and cross-industry coalition of trusted partners (including the Cabinet Office and City of London Police) who meet weekly to share information on emerging fraud threats and trends affecting business. The panel aims to act as a conduit to warn the public, private and third sectors about COVID-19 fraud risks. In addition to supply  preventative actions that can be taken.

Measures announced over recent months to deal with COVID-19 have seen our day-to-day life drastically changed forcing us to spend more time at home and online. Unfortunately, criminals are using every opportunity they can to scam innocent people and businesses.  has also released advice and guidance on how to protect yourself and your business from fraud and cyber crime. This guidance explains simple steps you can take to protect yourself and your business against fraud and cyber crime and where to get help. The National Cyber Security Centre has also published advice on how to spot COVID-19 scams and keep remote working safe.

If you think you’ve been scammed or you’ve found something which looks like fraud or a scam, contact Action Fraud.

Staying one step ahead of any critical risk to your organisation is part of being an effective business leader. For assistance in developing and implementing a fraud prevention strategy, contact us today or get a FREE QUOTE now!

Have you read?

Who is CRI Group?

Based in London, CRI Group works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 19600:2014 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

COVID-19’s impact on Cyber security: is your team safe?

When you download an app and it asks to access your contacts, location, and other information, it seems harmless enough, right? Surely the app will only use your data for its stated purpose, and only when needed? We all know that is not the whole truth. However, with COVID-19 forcing your workforce to embrace new practices of remote working you need to ensure your team’s business data is safe and your cyber security is too. Cybercriminals around the world are capitalising on this crisis, and your employees may not be aware. WHO reports fivefold increase in cyber attacks, urges vigilance, according to the article some 450 active WHO email addresses and passwords were leaked online along with thousands belonging to others working on the novel COVID-19 response.

According to a ScienceDaily article, “7 in 10 smartphone apps share your data with third-party services.” As the article warns:  “More than 70 percent of smartphone apps are reporting personal data to third-party tracking companies like Google Analytics, the Facebook Graph API or Crashlytics. When people install a new Android or iOS app, it asks the user’s permission before accessing personal information. Generally speaking, this is positive. And some of the information these apps are collecting are necessary for them to work properly: A map app wouldn’t be nearly as useful if it couldn’t use GPS data to get a location. But once an app has permission to collect that information, it can share your data with anyone the app’s developer wants to – letting third-party companies track where you are, how fast you’re moving and what you’re doing.”

The article also finds that the problem is not just limited to cell phones and tablets:

“Tracking users on their mobile devices is just part of a larger problem. More than half of the app-trackers we identified also track users through websites. Thanks to this technique, called “cross-device” tracking, these services can build a much more complete profile of your online persona.”

Another article, “Your Apps May Be Selling You Out” by Mondaq, sounds the alarm as well. The authors write that many of us likely aren’t aware of the degree to which our information is shared with advertisers and other third parties when we sign up for various apps. The principle is simple enough:

“If you have ever downloaded a ‘free’ app, you may have pondered how the app’s creator can maintain a financially viable company by giving away its product. The answer soon becomes evident when an advertisement pops up, interrupting your interaction with the app. The less obvious answer may come to you when you uncomfortably wonder how the ad that just popped up somehow relates to the items you browsed on Amazon a few days ago. Coincidence? Probably not. This happens because, in addition to selling advertisements, app creators may also access and sell information collected from your phone to allow advertisers to customize the ads they send to your device.”

How can people reasonably expect to solve this dilemma, and protect their privacy? How can organisations help their teams protect themselves? Short of changing laws, the answer is to be more vigilant in monitoring downloaded apps and our security settings. Follow this advice:

  • Don’t give apps permission to access your personable information. Most app stores require apps to gain permission before using your location, camera or using other information. If you deny the apps these permissions, your personal information should be safe from their grasps.
  • Check the permissions you have granted your existing apps. You may be letting them access personal information without even realizing it (even for apps you don’t use!).
  • Don’t sign up for apps on websites, especially ones you don’t know or trust. You have more protection when they are downloaded through a popular app store.
  • Delete apps that you don’t remember downloading or no longer need/use.
  • Consider adding security and privacy apps that scan your phone to help you find security risks. In other words, apps that police your other apps!

Unfortunately for those of us who frequently use mobile devices and are now working-from-home because of COVID-19 the odds are stacked against us when it comes to controlling and protecting our personal information. The best we can do is be aware of the risk and try to minimize it as best as possible. And to support new laws and regulations that aim to protect consumers and their privacy in all aspects of our “online lives.”

It is important to remember that the same principles that apply to protecting yourself on mobile devices and elsewhere also apply to protecting your business. Just as you must vet your apps, websites and other content to make sure they come from trusted sources, it is also critical to thoroughly check third party partners and perform background checks on potential and existing employees to ensure that your organization doesn’t face unseen risks from fraud and corruption.

CRI Group offers an entire suite of expert services focused on protecting your organization through proper pre-employment screening and background checks. These protections include:

Staying one step ahead of any critical risk to your organisation is part of being an effective business leader. Contact us today to get started on implementing a robust program that will serve you well for years to come. Get your FREE QUOTE now!

CRI Group, based in London, works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Background Screeningand Due Diligence solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations.

CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.
CRI Group has safeguarded businesses from any risks, providing investigations (i.e. insurance fraud), employee background screening, investigative due diligence, business intelligencethird-party risk management, forensic accounting, compliance and other professional investigative research services. In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 37301:2021 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

5 Tips for Preventing & Detecting Expense Fraud

It’s one of the most common forms of occupational fraud: employees fudging on their expense accounts. Earlier this month (June, 2020), Lookers (London-listed company) warned investors they might be unable to buy and sell its shares from the beginning of July because of potential fraud on its books – confirming £19m charge to correct books after fraud inquiry. Whether through fictitious charges, fake receipts or invoices, or other improper use of expense funds, an expense account is sometimes seen as a low-risk, high-reward area for committing fraud. It shouldn’t be. If your company takes the proper steps to review expense activity and protect itself from fraud, expense accounts will no longer be a vulnerable area of your finances.

The experts at CRI Group offer the following tips for bolstering your protection against expense account fraud:

1. Provide strict guidelines for credit card use

Often, expense account fraud is committed with the use of a credit card, with the employee seeking illegitimate reimbursement for various expenses. Detail how personal cards are allowed to be used, and require and review all receipts for claimed expenses. Also require supporting documentation (such as an airline boarding pass, for example) to ensure the purchase was used as intended.

2. Check company credit card statements carefully

In some cases, employees will use a company credit card to make a purchase, but then claim similar or duplicate expenses for reimbursement on their expense report. This is easy to catch if you carefully review company card statements and check them against reimbursements.

3. Ask questions

If a purchase seems odd or unrelated to business use, catching it early is the best way to resolve the issue. After too much time has passed, an employee might claim to have a difficult time remembering exactly what the questionable expense was for. If in doubt about a claim, ask for supporting documentation and a clear explanation of how the expense was used for a business purpose.

4. Implement a Code of Ethics for all employees

By including anti-fraud language in your Code of Ethics, which should communicate a strong anti-fraud stance and be signed by all employees, it will be clear that expense account fraud is not tolerated. Reinforce this with regular communications to employees reminding them that the company does not tolerate fraud in any form and offenders will be prosecuted.

5. Set a Tone at the Top

If the company has rules in place but senior staff aren’t following them, lower-level employees will follow by example and flout the rules, as well. All staff should follow the rules to the letter. Especially while on business trips with lower level employees, senior staff should set a positive example and make a point to follow the rules for business expenses.

Expense account fraud is a persistent problem in business, but it doesn’t have to be a crisis at your company. By using a common sense approach and some key prevention strategies, you can help ensure that your employees know the rules and are less likely to try to take advantage of company expense funds. For assistance in developing and implementing a fraud prevention strategy, contact us today or get a FREE QUOTE now!

 

About CRI Group

CRI Group, based in London, works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Background Screeningand Due Diligence solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background-screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations.

CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.
CRI Group has safeguarded businesses from any risks, providing investigations (i.e. insurance fraud), employee background screening, investigative due diligence, business intelligencethird-party risk management, forensic accounting, compliance and other professional investigative research services. In 2016, CRI Group launched Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 19600:2014 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.

KPOGCL engages ABAC Certification

Emerging provincial exploration and production company KPOGCL engages ABAC Certification for ISO 37001:2016 ABMS standard. Corporate Research and Investigations Private Ltd. (CRI Group) announced that KPOGCL, a nascent oil and gas exploration and production corporation in Pakistan, has engaged its CRI Certification services to achieve the ISO 37001 Anti-Bribery Management System Standard certification.

London-based CRI Group is a global provider of Integrity Due Diligence, Employment Background Screening, Third-Party Risk Management and Compliance and Other Professional Investigative Research services. In 2016, the company launched its Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption Center of Excellence (ABAC® CoE) to offer CRI Certification and expert training in programs including 3PRM-Certified™ and 3PRM-Qualified™.

KPOGCL is in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Pakistan, the provincial holding company established in 2013 to make KP self-sufficient by discovering indigenous resources in the province. Raziuddin Razi, CEO of KPOGCL, said that engaging in ISO 37001:2016 ABMS Certification helps the organisation provide “full confidence to its partners and shareholders, i.e., the government of KP, Pakistan.”

Razi said that KPOGCL “is in a relentless pursuit to bring the hidden treasures for the comfort of the masses and value for its shareholders. It has opened avenues of investment for international and national companies because it enjoys a great rapport with the business community as a competent and truthful entity.”

“KPOGCL’s journey to the London Stock Exchange via the Karachi Stock Exchange and AIM shall need milestones, such as ISO 37001,” Razi said. “The investors and business partners can fully rely on our merit and excellence, and ISO 37001 shall certify these characteristics of ours.”

ISO 37001:2016 Certification

The newly established ISO 37001 standard is designed to help global organisations implement an anti-bribery management system.  The standard specifies a series of measures required by the organisation to prevent, detect and address bribery, and provides guidance relative to that implementation.

Zafar Anjum, Group Chief Executive Officer of CRI Group, said that ISO 37001:2016 certification is designed to help companies establish, implement, maintain and enhance their internal anti-bribery and anti-corruption systems.

“We look forward to working with KPOGCL and helping them achieve their goals and be recognised as among the highest level of ethical organisations,” Anjum said. “It is of critical importance that ISO 37001:2016 standards are recognised and practised in more than 160 countries worldwide.”

CRI Certification’s auditors and analysts develop measures that integrate with existing management processes and controls, and include:

  • Adopting an anti-bribery policy
  • Establishing buy-in and leadership from management
  • Training personnel in charge of overseeing compliance
  • Communicating the policy and program to all personnel and business associates
  • Providing bribery and corruption risk assessments
  • Conducting due diligence on projects, business associates, and other third-party affiliations
  • Implementing financial and commercial controls
  • Developing reporting and investigation procedures

“Bribery is a key issue in both local markets and global business activities,” Anjum said. “The desire to expand business operations and maximise commercial profits requires not only identification and management of operational risks but also identification and mitigation of bribery risks. As the world’s governing bodies gravitate to more stringent standards and efforts to prevent corruption, bribery, and other unethical business practices, we stand ready to help companies meet and exceed those standards.”

Who is CRI Group?

Based in London, CRI Group works with companies across the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific as a one-stop international Risk Management, Employee Background Screening, Business IntelligenceDue Diligence, Compliance Solutions and other professional Investigative Research solutions provider. We have the largest proprietary network of background screening analysts and investigators across the Middle East and Asia. Our global presence ensures that no matter how international your operations are, we have the network needed to provide you with all you need, wherever you happen to be. CRI Group also holds BS 102000:2013 and BS 7858:2012 Certifications, is an HRO certified provider and partner with Oracle.

In 2016, CRI Group launched the Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption (ABAC®) Center of Excellence – an independent certification body established for ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems, ISO 37301:2021 Compliance Management Systems and ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management, providing training and certification. ABAC® operates through its global network of certified ethics and compliance professionals, qualified auditors and other certified professionals. As a result, CRI Group’s global team of certified fraud examiners work as a discreet white-labelled supplier to some of the world’s largest organisations. Contact ABAC® for more on ISO Certification and training.