BusinessBusiness RecoveryAIB: controls can be circumvented

AIB: controls can be circumvented

Traders will find ways around any company controls if they want to, says David Sherwin, partner in Ernst & Young's forensic services arm, who led the investigation into rogue trader Nick Leeson.

Speaking to financial website Cantos in the wake of the trading scandal at Irish bank AIB, Sherwin said in the case of Barings and other high profile cases, individuals had known ‘what the controls were and therefore they knew exactly how to get round them’.

Sherwin said measures should be taken to segregate the back office from the front office so that ‘traders and people who actually do the business on the day-to-day are not the same people who are writing up the books and doing the reconciliations in the back office’.

With reference to AIB, he said companies had an obligation to access their exposure to fraud, including looking at how secure their remote operations overseas were.

‘The final point is that there is always the cash point which is if people are wanting additional funds, one needs to equate those additional funds with the level of profits being earned by that particular operation,’ he said.

Sherwin said the AIB investigation could take years to unravel, and pointed to the Barings case which is still ongoing, seven years after the bank collapsed.

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