Bribery is not always obvious, and sometimes it’s cloaked in goodwill. It’s these subtle variations of approach and behaviour, which often cause individuals and organisations to fall foul of the UK Bribery Act 2010.
Frequently the issue is not the bribe itself, rather the back-story, context, form and language in which it is dressed. This is especially the case in situations where it is neither clear nor obvious what the risk or threat is.
Identifying and being aware of ‘red flags’ in behaviour will help individuals to notice whether what is being suggested is a bribe or not. So, when dealing with clients, developers, customers or contractors, what can you do to avoid being exposed to a potential bribe?
In essence, it’s about being professional and taking care, which means DON’T:
It’s also essential that your organisation has the necessary policies and procedures in place, plus a well-publicised and confidential means for getting advice or for reporting unwelcome approaches or suggestions. These will act as a system of checks and balances to help prevent bribery and misunderstanding.
As part of our commitment to the UK Government’s Anti-Corruption Plan, the CIPFA Counter Fraud Centre has launched a new Anti-bribery and Corruption e-Learning Package to equip organisations with the skills and knowledge required to effectively block and prevent bribery in the workplace. The Package is the third in a series of counter fraud products introduced by the Counter Fraud Centre this year to bolster public sector anti-corruption defences.
The Anti-bribery and Corruption e-Learning Package is geared towards those on the ground who have increased exposure to bribery risk. Many people in the UK, and UK citizens working abroad for public, private and not-for-profit organisations, need to be alert to risks and to the development of a relationship that could lead to a bribe being hinted at, offered or even accepted. The Package makes navigating the murky waters of bribery easier as it brings clarity to what is often perceived as a complex area of regulation.
The Anti-bribery and Corruption e-Learning Package includes an in-depth e-learning course on the Act, covering key definitions, main offences, jurisdiction, as well as advice on how a public body involved in commercial activity can defend itself against criminal liability under the Act.
The Package also includes a short, interactive slide-set designed to be shared across the organisation. It features engaging graphics and illustrations to illustrate how to recognise a bribe and what action can be taken in response.
Priced at £300, the Package is suited to all public sector organisations who want to strengthen their bribery defences.