Middle East White Collar Crime ‘May Often go Undetected’
A PwC survey indicating that the rate of economic crime in the Middle East is relatively low by global standards could mask a grimmer reality, the accounting group suggests.
According to PwC’s biannual 2014 Global Economic Crime Survey only 21% of the participating Middle East-based organisations report having fallen victim to financial fraud compared to the global average of 37%.
However, below the headline figure is a less encouraging reality: the region’s relatively low economic crime figure is more an indication of the lack of sufficiently-developed crime prevention and detection systems, meaning that the actual fraud numbers could be much higher than those reported.
“Middle Eastern organisations undertake fewer fraud risk assessments and put in place fewer fraud prevention and detection mechanisms,” said John Wilkinson, head of PwC’s Middle East forensic services. “That means that to look at that 21% figure in isolation is potentially misleading.”
Among the 2014 survey’s other findings: