Flawed flags – truth is power


Sometimes something apparently insignificant can have a big impact behind the scenes.

This was the case when the owner of a successful oil trading company came to us to uncover why he was struggling to secure financing from London banks, despite owning a healthy international business. Our client, based in Switzerland, had held several meetings with relationship managers who were keen to do business – only to be told they could not help him because of “compliance issues”.

At the time, our client was working to acquire an interest in an oil refinery in Ukraine – a deal that was politically sensitive. The issues around this led to some unfavourable blogs and social media content being written about him in the country. He suspected this could be the issue.

What we did

As knowledge is power, we undertook reverse due diligence through open source intelligence, to provide our client with a full brief of the issues banks were likely to find. The search revealed a number of untruths, including an unfavourable article in a Ukrainian newspaper.

Our legal team advised on legal action to take against publishers, while we engaged directly with compliance databases to correct their entries. In tandem, we implemented an online reputation strategy to correct the narrative for our client.

Finally, we created a comprehensive rebuttal pack for the client – addressing the full scope of negative and false allegations online, together with an independently verifiable source of wealth narrative.


Our client was able to move past the issue and secure financing from a UK bank. He is also viewed as open and transparent with his wealth, which banks and other institutions tell us will usually stand clients in a good position for further discussion, rather than immediately raising a red flag.

Capabilities Used
  • Defamation & libel
  • Litigation & dispute support
  • Reverse due diligence
  • Research & analytics
  • Resilience building
  • Search result audit & monitoring

Need help with a similar situation?

To discuss how we can help you, your family, or your business please call +44 (0)20 7034 9000