With so much potentially at stake, the initial steps and strategic decisions taken in any company investigation are critical to setting the tone for a focused, credible and effective inquiry. This is paramount not only for the purposes of getting to the bottom of what has happened and responding appropriately, but also for limiting a company's potential exposure and preparing it to engage with the relevant authorities. While every investigation is different, there are a number of key considerations that are common to all and that, if tackled appropriately, can ensure that a company is set on the right course from the outset. These include (i) setting the scope and terms of an investigation; (ii) securing and reviewing evidence; (iii) dealing with issues of legal privilege, data protection and banking confidentiality; (iv) assessing the nature of the company's risk; (v) dealing with employment issues; (vi) conducting interviews; (vii) assessing jurisdictional reach; and (viii) preparing the investigation report. In providing an overview of these, this chapter aims to give companies and their lawyers practical guidance on how to approach what are often fast-moving and complex investigations.

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An extract by Stephen Pollard, Christopher David and Elly Proudlock from "The European, Middle Eastern and African Investigations Review 2016," originally published by Global Investigations Review

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.