Experts warn offshoring companies to tighten security after bank scandal

Companies with offshore operations must ensure that they have the right security procedures in place to defend against fraudulent employees, experts have advised.

The warning follows an investigation by the Sun newspaper, which revealed that an Indian call centre worker was prepared to sell bank account details of 1,000 Britons for as little as £3 each.

Martyn Hart, chairman of the best practice group the National Outsourcing Association, said the investigation showed that some people, enticed by the prospect of a decent sum of money – and £4,250 is quite a considerable amount in Delhi – could be tempted to break the law and their company’s codes of conduct.

With any company, but particularly financial services firms, it is paramount that security is up to scratch whether processes are on shore or offshore, he said.

“There is always an element of risk where sensitive data is stored and companies must do their utmost to reduce this risk and provide the tightest security procedures possible,” he said.

According to Hart, companies often make the mistake that once a process is offshored, minimal management is needed, but this isn’t the case – because of the distance, increased management is required to ensure company procedures are adhered to.

“Security breaches occur when a more lackadaisical approach is taken to management or if you have an employed an errant employee. Although this is just as likely to happen in the UK as it is anywhere else,” said said.

However, Hart said that most offshore outsourcing suppliers did have strict security measures in place.

“They do not allow staff to take any writing implements in to their place of work so they cannot copy down sensitive information,” he said. “They only have access to the information they need and do not have the technology at their fingertips to copy or send this information to unauthorised sources.”

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