NICE Actimize, a company that offers corporate software to safeguard financial systems, is targeting corruption and bribery for its enterprise clients.
The company announced Wednesday (May 31) that it is rolling out NICE Actimize ABC, an anti-bribery and anti-corruption solution that analyzes financial data to identify potential instances of bribery for accountants and auditors.
“We often see the accountancy and audit function has a key role,” said NICE Actimize Global Director of its newly created Anti-Bribery and Corruption business Micah Willbrand in a statement. “In most enforcement actions, roughly 50 percent come out of whistleblowing. But at least a third of the identification of these bribery and corruption schemes in corporations comes from audit and accountancy.”
“As the owners of the books, the accountants are the first line of defense to identify anything that may look suspicious,” Willbrand added.
The firm’s ABC solution analyzes data across a company’s financial systems and supply chain, using cloud technology to assess the information across business, geographic, supplier and customer lines. The analytics are aligned with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, NICE Actimize said, allowing the company to analyze travel expenses, gifts and entertainment expenditure to identify potential evidence of bribery or corruption.
According to Willbrand, the business can sometimes be at odds with its own accounting unit, as conflicting pressures call for fast payments and sales, yet to also analyze and assess those transactions. Internal and external audits can often take place up to two years after transactions occur, meaning “it can be years before these schemes are picked up.”
“There is a really critical role within the finance and audit department, and that was one of the reasons we wanted to develop this service to help take a bit of that pressure off the finance department by having automated tools that will help identify suspicious transactions coming through that would be fed directly to the legal and ethics departments of companies,” the executive continued. “We’re supporting that audit function where today a lot of the identification of this is done manually.”