Friday, May 23, 2014


Images of Venezuelan nationals identified as corrupt by InfoBAE
This week's most important scandal, if you are involved in compliance, is the disclosure that a Caracas reputation restoration firm has hacked into a legitimate newspaper article, and placed disinformation into it, for the purpose of misleading readers. The authoritative Argentinian newspaper, InfoBAE, which some of you may remember has covered yours truly in the past, when I have lectured in Buenos Aires, has disclosed that a leading article it published, identifying the major corrupt Venezuelan PEPs, has been hacked, and two prominent Opposition figures, a former diplomat, and a journalist, who have no part in corrupt activity, and are actually expats, were placed on the list.

This disinformation, according to InfoBAE, which is intended to mislead and slander, was conducted by the Venezuelan reputation restoration firm owned by Rafael Nuñez-Aponte, whom we have exposed in a recent article* detailing how compliance officers performing due diligence can work around the Internet garbage that reputation restoration firms pollute the web with.

Therefore, you must assume that, when commissioned by disreputable individuals, these reputation restoration firms are not only hiding their clients' dark secrets, but libeling their opponents, whistle blowers, legitimate businessmen, journalists, and others, to undermine their credibility, especially if they have been exposing the reputation restoration firms' dirty clients. This means that you should now establish a policy of obtaining independent verification of negative information on your target, that you have obtained on the Internet, lest you unwittingly perpetrate a lie planted by one of these firms.

As the capabilities of these reputation restoration firms expand, compliance officers charged with due diligence must adapt their investigative techniques accordingly, lest they pick up disinformation, and act upon it, to the damage and detriment of their prospective clients, and even their bank.
*If your Due Diligence Target used a Reputation Restoration Firm, turn the beat around

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