Economic crime costing S.Africa businesses billions of dollars: report


Economic crime remains a serious challenge to business leaders, government officials and private individuals in South Africa; this is according to Louis Strydom, Forensic Services Leader for PwC Africa.

The trend has remained unchanged from 2014, with 69 percent of South African respondents reporting that they had experienced economic crime in the last two years.

The report also reported South African organisations seeing a considerably higher frequency in the incidence of economic crime in comparison to their African and global peers. 


More than two in three organisations (69%) indicated that they had been victim to economic crime in the last 24 months.

“When compared to the global statistic of 36 percent, we are faced with the stark reality that economic crime is at a pandemic level in South Africa. No sector or region is immune from economic crime,” added Strydom.

According to the report, sixty-one percent of Zambian respondents reported economic crime, up 31 percent over 2014.

“The fact that developed countries are included in the list of the top ten countries reporting the highest rates of economic crime brings home a clear message – economic crime is a global issue and one that affects developed markets as much as it does emerging ones,” adds Strydom. 

Almost a fifth of South African respondents experienced losses of between 100 000 US dollars and one million US dollars, and one in four respondents indicated having suffered losses of more than one million US dollars.

The report also saw South Africans exhibiting significantly low levels of confidence in local law enforcement agencies, with 70 percent of organisations believing agencies are inadequately resourced and trained to investigate and fight economic crime.

This is almost twice the global rate of 44 percent.