A few weeks ago, a complaint was made public by a former employee of a multinational technology company that accused the U.S. tech company of paying millions in bribes in Africa and the Middle East in exchange for software contracts. The claims are allegedly under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
This high-profile scandal highlights the increasing risk of doing business in countries where paying bribes is part of the culture. The payment of bribes by some companies is maybe more common than we think. Having compliance programs can make a difference when it comes to preventing and detecting acts of corruption in time. However, those programs mean nothing if they are not put to use and are not monitored for effectiveness. In other words, managing the risks inherent to each business affiliate across the world must be a proactive and constant task to avoid these types of investigations and corruption scandals.