24% of Singapore-based businesses have fallen victim to economic crime in the last 2 years

SINGAPORE - Some 24 per cent of Singapore respondents say they have been victims of economic crime, according to the Singapore edition of PwC's 2014 Global Economic Crime Survey.

On a global front, asset misappropriation (69%) remains the most common form of economic crime, followed by procurement fraud (29%)bribery and corruption (27%), cybercrime (24%), and accounting fraud (22%). Other reported crimes include human resources fraud, money laundering, intellectual property or data theft, mortgage fraud and tax fraud.

In Singapore, survey results showed that the main economic crimes experienced by Singapore respondents were asset misappropriation (80%), followed by bribery and corruption (15%), and cybercrime (15%).

Although Singapore respondents reported fewer cyber incidents compared to global respondents at 15 per cent and 24 per cent respectively, the risk of cybercrime occurring in Singapore is clear and present.

When PwC asked over 1,300 CEOs in a Global CEO Survey on what they thought would be the next big thing to revolutionise their business, industry or society in the next 10 years, technology was the most common response. While this represents exciting opportunities for companies, there are also risks as seen from several prominent and high impact cyber incidents that have occurred in Singapore in the last 12 months.

Bribery and corruption is another subject that is of particular relevance to Singapore-based companies, with 70 per cent of Singapore respondents reporting operations in territories with high corruption risks, compared to 50 per cent of their global peers.

The 2014 Global Economic Crime Survey was completed by 5,128 respondents from 95 countries between August and October 2013, including Singapore.

maryanns@sph.com.sg