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Daily Insurance Industry News
Wednesday 26th of September 2018
April 15, 2009

Recession could fuel extortion

by Richard Kilner

Story link: Recession could fuel extortion

The rising tide of large scale job cuts in the financial sector could lead to an increase in white collar related extortion crimes, according to specialist insurer Hiscox.

Citing a report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which indicates many developed nations will suffer unemployment rates of over 10%, Hiscox have warned that crimes exacerbated by recession will not be limited to burglary and theft.

For example, France has seen angry workers which have held their superiors hostage in so-called ‘boss napping’ incidents at 3M, Sony France and Caterpillar.

With financial services firms dependent upon computer software the possibility of malicious former employees utilising their knowledge of the system to create havoc is a very plausible scenario.

Only today, Swiss investment bank UBS announced 7,500 job losses, and recently HSBC announced it was shedding 1,200 jobs, with RBS reducing its headcount by 9,000.

Special Risks underwriter Charlie Hanbury has stated that previous recessions did see a spike in white collar crimes, including extortion, with recently unemployed people using their intricate knowledge of the former employer’s systems to both get revenge and make financial gain.

 

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