One of the things you will find about fraud is that it never stands still. As soon as new technologies or working practices are invented, there will be people looking to push these practices as far as they can, even bending the law if there is an opportunity. It is easy to see why many criminals would operate in such a manner. With new technology or working practices, it is likely that many officials need to wait until the standard working order or practice is breached before they are able to recognise all of the deficiencies and worries that exist. This means that when something becomes available to a market, there is a need for security staff to be on their toes.
The emergence of the internet and online capabilities has brought about a great number of new ways to engage and interact in recent times, and there has also been a great number of ways for people to earn money. Online gaming and gambling has become extremely popular as has Forex trading and investment.
Forex trading is based on the foreign exchange market and while this has long been available for people to trade on, it has previously only been available to a select few with a considerable amount of money. In recent years, there has been an opening up of the market, which has provided a considerable number of opportunities for people of all backgrounds and disposable income to try and make money by making investments on the interchange between foreign currencies.
While having an opportunity to trade from the comfort of your home or from your mobile device has helped plenty of people to get involved with this money-making opportunity, there has also been an increased opportunity for fraudulent activity. This is the case with anything where money is the driving force, but many businesses and organisations have also found themselves at risk, issuing guidelines for employees with respect to Forex trading.
An example of this has come just before Christmas 2014 with news that RBS has withheld bonuses from 18 employees. The topic of banking bonuses remains a hot topic in the United Kingdom, so there will be plenty of people who are delighted to hear that some bankers have missed out on their bonus. The reason for the bonuses being withheld is down to an ongoing investigation into whether these employees rigged the foreign exchange market. The firm has announced that an internal investigation is being carried out and that six employees have already been disciplined.
Major investigations are taking place within RBS
The company has confirmed that they are investigating over 50 employees, some still with the firm, others who have left the company, and this includes employees who were at management or executive level. This is just the latest scandal to hit the company, and again, not too many people will feel upset about RBS being punished. The firm received a fine of £400m from authorities in the US and the UK due to their role in a major banking scandal which broke in 2012. The firm was one of the gang of 6 banks that received a fine from the Swiss, US and UK authorities after an investigation found that the bank had attempted to influence the forex market over a period of a number of years.
The head of conduct and regulatory affairs at the bank admits that the company has a long way to go to gain trust from customers once again, saying; “We are undertaking a robust and thorough review into the actions of the traders that caused this wrongdoing and the management that oversaw it. This is a complicated process but also an essential one in order to identify culpability and accountability for this unacceptable misconduct. To be clear, no further bonus payments will be made or unvested bonus awards released to those in scope of the review until it has concluded and its recommendations have been considered.
There is a separate yet similar investigation being carried out into Barclays Bank and they may also have to act with respect to action undertaken in the forex market. It is believed that someone who used to work at RBS as a forex trader was arrested by Serious Fraud Office and the City of London police on Friday the 19th of December.
Forex trading may be a relatively recent phenomenon but anyone facing serious allegations relating to forex trading will need to receive the strongest level of legal support and defence that they can. There is a growing level of distrust of the banking institution, and it is important that anyone accused will be represented and defended on the charges and the evidence, and not on the public perception of the banking industry.
Andrew Reilly is a freelance writer with a focus on news stories and consumer interest articles. He has been writing professionally for 8 years but has been writing for as long as he can care to remember. When Andrew isn’t sat behind a laptop or researching a story, he will be found watching a gig or a game of football.