Finding evidential needles in massive data haystacks

Finding evidential needles in massive data haystacks

December 07, 2017

By David Lawler, Keith McCarthy, Paul Nash

The role of financial and data analytic experts in an investigation

Companies with international operations today face scrutiny at an unprecedented level.  They are subject to reviews and investigations by national governments, as well as local, state, and foreign government agencies.  They may then face civil claims by other aggrieved stakeholders who may call into question a company’s conduct.  It is vital that companies faced with allegations or suspicions of wrongdoing properly understand them, and conduct their own detailed internal investigation to resolve them.

The last 20 years of technological evolution has deeply and permanently altered business record-keeping.  In matters involving bribery and corruption, the majority of the facts will now be found inside corporate networks, email servers, and electronic devices, and in accounting systems which capture the details of millions of transactions.

In this chapter, we set out some of the elements that should be considered when undertaking a multi-jurisdictional anti-bribery and corruption investigation, focusing on the increasing role that the non-legal experts play – the forensic accountants, data analysts, and investigators – and how they can be used most effectively to search the data haystacks for evidence as to what has gone on and where problems might arise in the future, while minimising disruption to the business.

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David Lawler Managing Director, Investigations & Disputes

David Lawler is a Managing Director in Kroll’s Investigations and Disputes practice, based in London. David is a seasoned forensic accountant, with over 25 years’ experience helping multinational companies, financial institutions and their advisers identify, investigate and respond to complex financial issues. He is an expert in internal investigations and the use of analytics to highlight high-risk transactions and to put in place best-of-breed procedures and controls to stop problems recurring. He also has significant experience working with companies, regulators, prosecutors, and monitors on worldwide compliance, ABC, and AML matters, both reactive, and proactive. He is also an experienced expert witness and is recognised as one of the world’s leading consulting experts in the 2016 edition of Who’s Who Legal.

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David Lawler
Paul Nash Associate Managing Director, Investigations and Disputes

Paul Nash is an Associate Managing Director in Kroll’s Investigations and Disputes practice, based in the London office. Paul has over 15 years’ experience undertaking global investigations into fraud and corruption allegations and leading anti-corruption compliance reviews for a wide range of clients. He has worked across several industries with specific expertise helping clients operating in the life sciences, oil and gas, and mining sectors.

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Paul Nash