Romanian companies can use a private investigation agency’s services for various reasons: either for simple due diligence analysis, or to dismantle complex fraud schemes developed inside or outside the company. What they all do have in common, however, is the entrepreneurs or a company’s top management’s need to know the truth and to, thus, take all the necessary measures in order to protect the company’s and its stakeholders’ interests regarding possible fraud attempts.
Choosing the private investigation agency to which you will entrust such important tasks as finding the truth, managing the risks of fraud and protecting your business’s interests, may be difficult.
In Romania, more than 650 private investigator agencies are authorized, of which only 20% offer corporate investigation services. So how do you choose the one that best suits your company’s needs?
In addition to brand awareness and market positioning – criteria that are more related to the public guarantee offered by the private investigation agency’s brand – here are 3 other important aspects that a company should consider when choosing its partner in corporate investigations and finding out the truth:
- Experience in public-private partnership
The cooperation between private investigators and the competent authorities has multiple advantages for the client, both entities aiming to find out the truth and obtain the necessary evidence, in full compliance with the legal framework.
An anti-fraud investigation agency with experience in public-private partnerships has the necessary knowledge on authorities’ needs, the typology and format of evidence to be used in the legal actions and, last but not least, stays by authorities’ side and actively contributes throughout the case investigation, until its completion. But perhaps the most important benefit for the client working with an investigation agency that has experience in public-private partnership, is the high degree premises for recovering the damage caused by corporate fraud.
In 2017-2020, SPIA – Secret Private Investigations Agency was actively engaged in 12 cases, all with a very high level of difficulty, but also with a judicial purpose and certain premises of prejudice recovery, which was estimated at over 6 million euros.
In all the 12 cases, SPIA investigators cooperated with law enforcement agencies in authorized anti-fraud measures, which resulted in the joint capitalization of the judicial interest with that of the beneficiary, on one hand, and a bilateral transfer of experience and know-how with state institutions, on the other hand.
Besides the capabilities, resources and support that a private investigation agency can provide to the judiciary, in an anti-fraud investigation, the value of the public-private partnership is particularly important: the main beneficiary is the client who contracted the business investigation services.
- Areas of experience and results obtained
It is recommended that the anti-fraud investigation agency you choose to work with has a multi-profile specialization. For example, SPIA’s experience corroborates areas considered to be atypical – energy, insurance, banking – because they have limitations and obligations arising from aspects of secondary legislation.
The business card of an agency that specializes in corporate investigations is completed by the results with significant impact in the industries and the addressed cases and, last but not least, by its experience in dismantling national organized crime groups, specialized in different types of complex frauds.
An advantage is also the unitary approach of investigations, through the partnership of competing entities, but which pursue the same operational goal. Simply put, identifying and documenting the facts of authors who simultaneously harmed several competing companies and co-opting them into a win-win partnership.
- Operational synergies
The high dynamics of the criminal spectrum entails the need for an integrated approach to managed cases, from several perspectives.
At SPIA, we make sure that:
– the specific investigative actions fully comply with the legal framework;
– the need to carry out investigative operations is real, especially from the perspective of judicial finality;
– we select the best methods for obtaining and preserving evidence with probative value;
– we identify and manage any risks that may arise at the end of operations;
– we protect the beneficiary’s interests , be they material or reputational.
Last but not least, we recommend that the private investigation agency you choose to work with is permanently connected to the legal environment and pays attention to the legislative changes that occur in criminal and civil matters.
Once the selection has been made, the private corporate investigation agency will be contacted, and the collaboration will start. At SPIA, this process consists of 4 steps:
- You tell us what problem you are facing, and we conduct a preliminary short investigation, which will help us understand the context and industry in which your company operates. Of course, everything is done with the utmost discretion.
- We propose the case approach and the action plan, we explain to you what is going to happen, why, what risks may occur, how we will prevent them and what we want to achieve.
- In step 3, we conduct the investigation and collect, centralize, analyse and interpret data.
- At the end, we will present you a detailed report containing all the obtained information, along with a set of conclusions and our recommendations. If you need, we can also help you with legal advice and even crisis communication services.
As for us, We are telling you the truth! is not just a slogan on marketing materials. It is the promise we make and keep to the end, even if the truth discovered through our investigations may create discomfort.