A peek into India Inc.’s forensic outlook 2016

FO2016Economic growth, regulatory reforms and enhanced investor confidence took the Indian business environment by storm in 2015. Companies steadily turned toward a more effective and ethical way to do business and attempted to tighten the noose on unethical practices. While there has been a gradual shift in mind-set as well as execution, companies need to continue increasing their awareness around fraud, bribery and corruption related risks.

In 2016, organizations need to continue being conscious of rising threats which could have an impact on them. In line with this thought, we have outlined key trends to enable CXOs to comprehend these issues and build an inclusive path for organizational success.

Mitigating cybercrime risks – 2015 saw perpetrators attack and compromise large corporations, leaving them struggling to protect their IP and sensitive data. With this in mind, companies will attempt to be better prepared in their cyber security measures. At the same time, there will be a spike in solutions and services such as proactive assessments, network security monitoring and deception technologies such as honeypots.

Addressing concerns in the banking and financial services sector – Being the backbone of the economy, the sector will go through significant changes in order for the country to effectively tread a growth path. 2015 saw the sector come under the pressure of rising non-performing assets (NPAs) in the corporate loans space. While the Government and regulators are trying to resolve this, financial institutions themselves will have to take stricter action toward errant borrowers and focus on the impact on recovery.

Crusading against bribery and corruption – During the past year, there has been an intense global regulatory enforcement around flouting of bribery and corruption norms. From an India standpoint, there was an increased thrust toward attempting to amend regulations (Companies Act 2013, Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill, 2013, Lokpal and Lokayuktas and other related Law (Amendment) Bill, 2014, and the amendments to the Whistle-blowers Protection Act, 2011) to incorporate a more robust approach to tackle perpetrators on this front. Taking this into account, it is perceived that 2016 will bring in a new wave of change in terms of mechanisms available to deal with such issues.

Leveraging dispute resolution mechanisms – 2015 has seen a change around varied avenues to resolve commercial disputes with the emergence of alternate dispute resolution mechanisms such as mediation, conciliation and arbitrations. These platforms are gaining prominence. Going forward, companies will need to embrace evolving dispute resolution mechanisms that will help to businesses manage the commercial disputes effectively.

Rising support through eDiscovery and Managed Document Review – Today, General Counsels (GCs) and in-house legal professionals have a tough task ahead of them when it comes to managing the company’s legal affairs. These could be compliance with relevant laws and regulations, disputes, litigation or arbitration proceedings. With such challenges, GCs will increasingly turn to managed services such as eDiscovery and Managed Document Review for efficiency as well as cost savings.

Follow @EY_India and track #EYForensic for regular updates

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