Improve Culture and Reduce Risk Through Special Investigations

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Increase business integrity and risk awareness through effective investigations of business wrongdoings using OpsAudit.

When I joined Elevations, it took me less than a week to learn how to use AuditBoard, how to integrate the workflow system to easily request things from clients, to receive information back, remediate issues, and streamline the entire process, including preparing, reviewing, and clearing workpaper comments.

Adam Russell

Senior Internal Auditor

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Why Organizations Should Perform Special Investigations

Identify Wrongdoing Early On

Special investigations can identify potential areas of policy or legal violations by the company or its employees before serious wrongdoing has occurred.

Fraud Detection

Instead of organizations waiting for annual external audits to assess financial records, a special investigation audit can catch fraud cases early.

Reduce Reputational Damage

In a special investigation after an identified violation has occurred, organizations can significantly reduce reputation damage by demonstrating their ability to confirm that a crime was committed, identify suspects, recover stolen property, and assist in prosecution of the crime.

What Are Special Investigations?

From a corporate perspective, these are investigations triggered by allegations of financial reporting fraud, bribery, conflicts of interest, harassment, and/or cyber theft. Below are different types of special investigations:

  • Compliance Audit – conducted when there is a need to examine the policies and procedures to check if they follow internal or regulatory standards.
  • Information Systems Audit – conducted when there is a need to review the overall controls present in software development.
  • Investigative Audit – conducted when there is a need to find details of a specific event or an incident within the company that was suspicious.

Ethics Audit: 9 Steps to Audit and Monitor an Ethical Culture

by Jamal Ahmed Read Article
Ethics Audit: 9 Steps to Audit and Monitor an Ethical Culture

Who Needs Special Investigations?

Special investigations are most often needed when abnormal behavior is suspected within the organization. They are called for when it is suspected that laws and regulations pertaining to finances or financial management have been overlooked. However, they are not only restricted to cases pertaining to fraud. They can also be conducted when there are other institutional violations pertaining to duties, authorizations, internal control procedures, or responsibilities of senior management. In the same manner, special investigations can also be related to corporate reorganization or bankruptcy.

What Is the Purpose of Special Investigations?

A special investigation is a formal inquiry conducted by a company to determine whether laws, regulations, or internal policies were violated and, if so, recommend corrective action. They are conducted either before serious wrongdoing when there is a substantial likelihood of policy or legal violations by the company or its employees, or after potential wrongdoing when a company becomes aware of allegations, whether from an outside source (e.g., law enforcement) or from inside the company (e.g., whistleblower claims). Four objectives of a special investigation are to 1) establish that a crime was actually committed, 2) identify and apprehend the suspect(s), 3) recover stolen property, and 4) assist in the prosecution of the person(s) charged with the crime.

How Can I Manage Special Investigations with AuditBoard?

Elevate and deliver value throughout special investigations — including planning, fieldwork, testing, reporting, and enhanced stakeholder engagement — in one simple platform. OpsAudit centralizes and streamlines all aspects of investigation, allowing auditors or investigators to accelerate testing, issue management, and reporting. Get real-time visibility into the status of your testing, issue reporting, and remediation status.


Special Investigations Resources

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