Standards Australia has updated its fraud- and-corruption-control standard to provide conforming guidance for organisations’ governing bodies.

AS 8001:2021 Fraud and corruption control now provides minimum requirements for organisations wishing to develop, implement, and maintain an effective fraud-and-corruption-control system.

It addresses internal and external fraud and corruption in organisations and businesses, not individuals.

Fraud and corruption are significant issues for Australian businesses, governments, and not-for-profit organisations, often resulting in financial and reputational damage.

The revised standard includes a requirement for information-security management consistent with ISO/IEC 27001 Information technology – Security techniques – Information Security Management Systems – Requirements.

The updates also include guidance on the roles of governing bodies and top management, and whistleblower protection.

The standard outlines initiatives that aim to prevent and detect fraud and corruption, as well as guidance on how to respond to frauds that have already occurred. Organisations wishing to develop and implement fraud-and- corruption controls are provided guidance on early detection and effective responses for optimal outcomes.

Dean Newlan, director of the Australian Institute of Professional Investigators, said, ‘AS 8001 has had a significant impact on fraud-and-corruption control in Australian

organisations since 2003. It is widely regarded as a benchmark for preventing and detecting fraud and corruption and for responding to fraud-and-corruption events when they occur.

‘It not only considers fraud-and corruption- risks where the organisation itself is the target, but also where the organisation, or someone believing they are acting in the organisation’s best interest, is the perpetrator.

‘This third edition of the standard recognises and responds to an alarming increase in cyber-attack and technology-enabled fraud and provides upgraded guidance on the accountabilities of boards and senior management in controlling organisational fraud and corruption.’

The following ISO standards were particularly relevant to the AS 8001:2021 update:

  • ISO 37001 Anti-bribery management systems
  • ISO 37002 Whistleblowing management systems
  • ISO 37301 Compliance management systems, and
  • ISO 37007 Corporate governance – guidelines for efficiency measurement.

Standards Australia’s head of standards development Roland Terry-Lloyd said, ‘Australian organisations and businesses will benefit from this standard. The updates and revisions are comprehensive, and the committee has done a thorough job of allocating guidance that is inclusive of the technology updates we’ve experienced over the past 10 years.’