In today's post-Sarbanes-Oxley corporate environment, all companies face heightened scrutiny and increased reporting responsibilities for corporate wrongdoing. However, they also now have the benefit of the new confidential reporting mechanisms to assist in uncovering and investigating potential and actual misconduct.As a result, more companies will be confronted with the need to undertake internal investigations to verify and determine the extent of the wrongdoing. For better or for worse, corporate internal investigations have become a necessary part of doing business - and companies must know how to conduct them.

When an incident such as theft or fraud is known or suspected, general counsel, chief executives and chief financial officers must react quickly and appropriately - taking the right steps and capturing the information needed for reporting or prosecuting the accused. If mishandled, even a relatively insignificant matter can become a much more serious and costly scenario.

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