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Practice Areas

Enhanced Due Diligence

The Interfor Difference

Financial affairs are predicated on trust and fair dealing.  As world economies continue to fluctuate, the temptation to falsify earnings, overvalue assets, and otherwise ‘cook the books’ increases exponentially.  Unregulated and misunderstood financial vehicles are breeding grounds for theft, misappropriation and mismanagement. Relying on reputation, a referral or a recommendation alone is no longer a sensible business strategy. 

In this environment of increased scrutiny and concern, knowing who you are dealing with, what they do and how they do it is paramount to prudent investment and hiring.  It is critical to institute or expand your due diligence requirements to determine the true identity and underlying interests of any prospective employee, business agents or associates your institution may hire or conduct business with.

Since 1979, Interfor International has performed enhanced due diligence [DD] investigations for clients in need of comprehensive background information about new investments, business relationships and prospective partners.  Our services have been utilized by large and small companies, hedge funds, private equity firms and financial institutions in lieu of or as a supplement to in-house research and compliance units.

From vetting potential partners in China or South America to ascertaining business relationships from the Netherlands to New Zealand, we assist businesses and their counsel in every corner of the world.  Formulating investigative strategies for businesses is a feature of our multidisciplinary research and investigative teams. Our unique capabilities have been recognized by corporations, financial institutions and law firms throughout the world. 

With extensive sources in Europe, South America, the Middle East, Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa, Interfor’s capabilities are global.  All inquiries are conducted with complete discretion and confidentiality by our field investigators, many formerly associated with government, defense and intelligence agencies.  Interfor’s field investigators are also supported by a sophisticated research division, drawing information from more than 2,000 databases and a network of relationships with law enforcement agencies and special sources developed over 40 years of business in the investigative field.  

Whatever the need, Interfor has the ability to rapidly assemble an integrated, international team of investigators, researchers, fraud examiners and sources who are ready to provide vital, timely and essential services for all types of situations.

All of our many services are rendered with the Interfor hallmark:  diligence, discretion, thoroughness and responsiveness.

Who you work with is your business—-making sure they’re legit is ours.

Comprehensive Due Diligence Investigations

Interfor’s thorough compliance investigations provide clients with fundamental background checks on parties involved in impending transactions.  As set forth, it is the most comprehensive examination in the industry. 

These investigations include, as applicable:

  • Verification of the subject’s identity (address and social security number check to prevent false identification fraud)
  • Civil records check
  • Criminal background check
  • Name screening on government terrorist and criminal lists
  • Nationwide bankruptcy search
  • Property search
  • Country-wide media review
  • Social media review
  • Violent Sex Offender/Predator scan
  • Professional license, education and credential verification
  • Lien and judgment search
  • Determining if the targets or their companies are under investigation by government regulatory agencies

Enhanced Due Diligence Investigations

For persons or companies redflagged as a result of Interfor’s basic compliance investigation or for suspicious activity, Interfor recommends an enhanced DD investigation.  This type of due diligence encompasses all of the basic compliance components, but adds additional key elements as necessary. These investigative initiatives may include:

  • Deployment of local field investigators
  • Reputation inquiries – identifying, locating and interviewing people who know of or have done business with the target to determine their general reputation and standing, business dealings and associations
  • A financial profile of the person or company.

Interfor has offices throughout the world and confidential sources in most countries.  As part of enhanced due diligence investigations, Interfor’s field investigators can conduct more comprehensive reputation inquiries by making use of resources and relationships available only at the local level.  This includes verification of physical assets listed as collateral or otherwise; and contact with local law enforcement personnel, government and industry sources for additional information or inquiries.

Why Use an Investigator?

The recent proliferation of cyber-attacks, new generations of fraud and identity theft schemes, and the expansion of business and markets to an ever-expanding array of countries have heightened the risks associated with conducting business in the global marketplace.  This dynamic has led to an explosive growth in database software and investigation firms, all purporting to provide the solution to a company’s due diligence needs. Two problems, however, are associated with this “solution.” First, companies often overestimate the scope of information available by way of databases.  Second, most emerging intelligence firms do not have the resources, experience and contacts necessary to conduct sophisticated investigations.

Many companies (new and old) are trying to break into the due diligence market by making extravagant promises about costs and results.  A close examination of these “due diligence programs” reveals that they simply punch a subject’s name into Lexis/Nexis or similar database and report any findings.  A single database source cannot access the volumes of information available in the public domain, nor can most software programs provide information from foreign jurisdictions.  Also, some firms are selling “due diligence” software to allow companies to conduct their own research. Bear in mind any software that is not updated daily is obsolete. Furthermore, although it may sound appealing to handle these investigations in-house, the cost of training employees to the point where they are experts can be prohibitive, and simply may not be possible.

Complex investigations often require techniques and relationships that can be developed only over time, and via experience; they also require field work and face-to-face meetings.  These tasks cannot be done by using a single database or computer search engine; an expert investigator must be deployed. Additionally, internal employees and emerging investigation firms do not have the capabilities and breadth of experience to satisfy the demands of complicated investigations, particularly if the due diligence involves parties overseas.  

Institutions should carefully choose their investigative provider, examining the provider’s years in operation and existing client base, and obtaining references from the investigator’s clients.  Interfor has been in operation for 40 years and its New York headquarters alone has investigators with more than 100 years of combined experience. Interfor is pleased to provide references upon request.

How Interfor Operates

Interfor’s business philosophy has always dictated that we will not take on work when we are not confident we can be effective.  Therefore, clients are advised to provide Interfor in advance with all pertinent information about the prospective target, as well as any concerns regarding the investigation.  In return, a detailed written proposal detailing the scope of investigation, the case budget, and the case timelines will be prepared within 24-48 hours. 

The case budget will be based on the following factors:

  • Quantity and quality of information provided at the outset by the client
  • The scope of services
  • Number of persons or entities to be investigated
  • Geographical location of the targets
  • Number of geographical locations

Interfor can be placed on retainer to handle volume on an annual basis or to investigate large groups of employees, jury panels or account holders on a case-by-case basis.  Fee arrangements will be adjusted accordingly.

Geographical Considerations

An investigation of an individual in Chicago will be much less costly and quicker than one on an individual in Libreville, Gabon.  In order to provide clarity and predictability, Interfor has created a system of geographical zones to conduct investigations in countries all over the world.

Litigation Support

Although renowned for our due diligence and asset search and recovery services, the great majority of Interfor’s cases are in the area of litigation support. Our Litigation Support Group is strongly positioned to protect your clients in today’s challenging environment.

From breach of contract to price fixing cases, we conduct all aspects of the litigation process – pre-trial intelligence gathering, discovery, trial preparation, witness location, development and execution of strategy and post-judgment asset tracing.

As a full-service investigative firm, we provide a complete menu of investigative and consulting services throughout the world. Whatever the area of expertise, all of many services are rendered with the Interfor hallmark: diligence, discretion and thoroughness.

Interfor offers rapid response solutions in today’s increasing complex, litigious and globalized environment. Our international, experienced team of investigators, researchers, fraud examiners and sources are ready to provide vital, timely and essential services wherever and whenever the need arises in all manner of situations.

Interfor has the resources and experience to handle every type of dispute from small inquiries to the largest, most complex cases. We understand and respect the uniqueness of every client and every case in controversy.

Litigation Support Services
Corporations face a daunting array of legal challenges in today’s business environment. These disputes can range from frivolous lawsuits to “bet the company” and “scorched earth” litigation. Whatever the case, you need experienced investigators who can provide sound research and actionable intelligence to guide your course of action.

Interfor offers a wide array of services to ensure thorough litigation preparedness in all types of cases. Since 1979, we have worked discreetly and confidentially providing vital intelligence to litigators. Interfor supports any and all activities that prepare litigants for trial in the pre-litigation, in-litigation and post-litigation stage.

Interfor offers comprehensive, worldwide intelligence and investigative services, including:

  • Special factual inquiries
  • Witness location
  • Evidence gathering
  • Pre-discovery intelligence gathering
  • Background investigations
  • Interviewing witnesses
  • Selection, management and vetting of expert witnesses
  • Document discovery
  • Case preparation
  • Asset investigations
  • Post-judgment asset investigations

Interfor’s investigative findings can help legal strategists and businesses decide whether to litigate, negotiate or chart an alternative route to dispute resolution.

We have worked closely with financial institutions, corporate entities and their inside and outside counsel to manage these challenges throughout the world.  Our case managers and investigators have been involved with high-profile cases, and we understand the special circumstances of media exposure.  The Litigation Support Group has regularly represented parties in major trials in state and federal courts as well as arbitration tribunals in the United States and abroad.

Interfor has the ability to rapidly assemble an integrated, international team of investigators to address all aspects of a client’s problem and to handle various inquiries in multiple jurisdictions.  We have the experience and know-how to tackle complex investigations aggressively and incisively on your behalf.

Asset Search & Recovery

Interfor offers a comprehensive package of asset search services to corporations, law firms, bankers’ workout or restructuring departments, financial institutions and creditors’ committees, including:

  • Post-judgment searches to identify assets
  • Pre-litigation asset identification
  • Loan defaults and debtor assessment
  • Bankruptcies and insolvencies

As a world leader in asset search and recovery, Interfor has developed the unique capability to locate concealed or undisclosed assets hidden in international “safe havens” and domestic accounts, assisting clients in successfully recovering billions of dollars with this service. Much of Interfor’s success has been due to our pioneering use of international legal remedies to maximize recovery.

What does an asset search cover?

The Interfor strategy is to develop a full financial profile on the subject by investigating the location and worth of all real property, personal property, interests in properties, interests in business entities, stocks, bonds, accounts receivable, royalties, patents and other valuable assets. Interfor also examines the assets of spouses and family members for possible transfers, corporations associated with the subject and the subject’s partners.

Additionally, Interfor identifies individuals or entities that can provide leads and direction to the discovery of hidden assets, conducts a lifestyle analysis to determine how the target meets his current obligations and examines what business he is currently conducting.

Interfor’s confidential financial sources are available to develop additional intelligence on the subject(s) as may be required.

Interfor’s asset recovery division is unique as our resources are as strong abroad as they are within the U.S. Interfor works with legal counsel who provide international experience and worldwide resources to assist in the freezing of assets for later collection. As part of Interfor’s on-going commitment to our clients, Interfor monitors changes in asset protection legislation throughout the world to ensure that clients are afforded every opportunity to recover assets to which they are entitled.

Judgment Collection

Where collection of a judgment is involved, Interfor works as a team with legal counsel to use our international experience and resources to assist in freezing assets for later collection.

Physical & Cyber Security

After more than 40 years as an international corporate investigator, Interfor has helped thousands of clients restore the integrity of their operations following incidents of fraud or other corporate misconduct. Our experience has shown that many of our clients, had they properly considered security precautions, would have been spared the financial losses and reputation problems resulting from corporate malfeasance. This is particularly true for our clients who do business overseas or in highly competitive markets.

Protecting our clients from harm, whether physical or financial, is of the utmost importance to Interfor. To keep our clients’ assets, personnel, intellectual property and trade secrets safe and to prevent those affected by corporate fraud from being victimized again, Interfor offers a full range of physical security and threat management consulting services.

The Comprehensive Physical Security Vulnerability Assessment

The primary objective of the Physical Security Vulnerability Assessment is to observe and analyze areas of potential and/or actual vulnerability, to define causes, and to recommend means to reduce or eliminate exposure. In conducting the assessment, Interfor utilizes a specialized process known as The Interfor Method. The Interfor Method ensures that the assessment will be catered to the client’s individual and specific needs and allows for the most comprehensive analysis available on the market.

The assessment includes a review of: access control systems and procedures; ingress/egress procedures, intrusion detection systems; application of electronic control systems; employee and visitor identification procedures; IT procedures; employee/vendor background investigations; and general personnel policies and procedures.

Interfor specializes in an array of security services such as:

  • Office Security Assessment
  • Information Systems Evaluation
  • Personal Protection Consulting
  • Crisis Management & Threat Mitigation

Physical Security Assessment
The Interfor Difference

The primary objective of the Physical Security Vulnerability Assessment is to observe and analyze areas of potential and/or actual vulnerability, to define causes, and to recommend means to reduce or eliminate exposure. In conducting the assessment, Interfor utilizes a specialized process known as The Interfor Method. The Interfor Method ensures that the assessment will be catered to the client’s individual and specific needs and allows for the most comprehensive analysis available on the market.
The assessment includes a review of: access control systems and procedures; ingress/egress procedures, intrusion detection systems; application of electronic control systems; employee and visitor identification procedures; IT procedures; employee/vendor background investigations; and, general personnel policies and procedures.

The Interfor Method

The Interfor Method involves an extensive system designed to assess, analyze, report and test areas of potential or actual vulnerability. The method can be scaled easily and implemented within small businesses, middle-market companies and large corporations. Although the following reflects a framework of the method, given that no two assessments are identical, it should only be regarded as a guide.

Initial Meeting

  • Introduction to client’s corporate structure, services and identity
  • Identification of key personnel
  • Creation of a cross-functional Assessment Team (usually comprised of senior-level personnel within pertinent groups, divisions or business units)

Pre-Assessment Meeting/Survey

  • Determination of the scope of the Interfor Assessment
  • Discussion of perceived threats and historical incidents
  • Classification of industry-wide threats
  • Identification of key assets (i.e. personnel, facilities, material)
  • Discussion of process for reporting and gathering information
  • Establishment of timeline for entire process
  • Identification of deliverables
  • Identification of required tools and documentation (i.e. protocols and procedures)
  • Clearance obtained for Interfor personnel

Comprehensive Onsite Assessment

  • Implementation of the agreed-upon plan including physical assessments of facilities during both daytime and evening hours
  • Review of current protocols and procedures and a determination of the level of compliance throughout the organization
  • Comprehensive interviews with identified key personnel
  • Aggressive testing of current security precautions and barriers through various prearranged means
  • Evaluation of emergency planning and mitigation procedures and policies
  • Analysis of business continuity plans
  • Evaluation of security training and education procedures

Data Analysis and Initial Report Generation

  1. Professional analysis of collected data
  2. Design and development of report outlining observations and recommendations

Preliminary Briefing

  1. General and specific observations of vulnerabilities throughout the organization
  2. Specific recommendations highlighting areas of critical concern as well as areas in need of improvement
  3. Discussion of the needs for further evaluation or testing

Presentation of Findings and Recommendations

  • All findings and recommendations will be reported in a manner which fits the needs of the organization
  • Presentation of all updated, rewritten or modified policies and procedures
  • Recommendations for the implementation of training or awareness programs

Testing of Implemented Recommendations

  • Prearranged audits to determine if the improvements have been implemented correctly
  • Findings report and further recommendations
  • Recurring evaluations and/or audits on a predetermined schedule

Threat Intelligence and
Sentiment Monitoring

Many large companies use a variety of tools to leverage digital channels, manage campaigns, brand success and consumer sentiment to ultimately drive more sales.

However, a smaller proportion of corporations are monitoring digital conversations to identify threats (internal or external) and monitor negative sentiment (disgust, fear, anger, hate).

This is especially important for corporations that are facing threats on a daily basis and need to understand where they come from, their degree of severity and what immediate steps should be taken to address the threats.

The same can be said regarding negative sentiment. Negative sentiment can be segmented into different emotions and into different levels of intensity. Negative sentiment may not be an immediate threat to the organization but might develop into something more dangerous if it falls under hate and high intensity.

Interfor International provides threat intelligence and insights for clients who need to constantly monitor and classify threats. We analyze the threats and then provide actionable recommendations to react efficiently to potential security breaches, to neutralize attacks and to protect against new forms of attack.

Outsourced CSO Program

Interfor’s Outsourced CSO program brings physical, and Cyber Security leadership, industry experience, and a deep bench to one of the most important operational roles companies face: the Chief Security Officer (“CSO”). Mid to large-sized companies often struggle with a dedicated responsibility towards security. We help clients free themselves from the burden of an ‘all-in-one’ hire so they can devote more time to their core business. The outsourced CSO is an on-demand resource to senior management without the need to hire, train, and maintain an internal security director. By working with the business and understanding the overall goals of the organization, an entire security program can be designed, implemented for a fraction of the cost of an internal hire.

For existing yet under-resourced security managers, Interfor can serve as force-multiplier through this service.

The Outsourced CSO role provides access to a seasoned security professional for issues including risk mitigation, hiring or firing employees, executive risk exposure, developing security policies and procedures, due diligence, and comprehensive physical and IT security planning. We work with the C-suite to integrate into their growth vision an insightful, actionable, and measurable risk management plan that delivers results.

A companion offering, the Outsourced Security Operations Director, is designed for companies who already have a CSO or equivalent position. The primary mission of this program is to develop and implement security plans, including providing direction and guidance to outside agencies and the internal management team. We develop strategic security plans and long term strategies that are backed up by best practices that can facilitate aligning an entire organization that may have been missing the strength that a robust security program can deliver. The role of a Security Operations Director is critical within any security department.

Advantages of the Outsourced CSO Program:

  • Increased consistency and quality of management
  • Decreased employee-related expenses
  • Decreased training and HR expenses
  • Standardization of processes
  • Speedy delivery of service and information
  • Develop talent management and redeployment
  • Frees up other internal stakeholders (legal, HR, operations, etc.) to spend more time on core business
  • Improve ROI per employee
  • Potentially lower liability insurance rates

Cyber Security

Interfor’s Cyber Risk and Technology team consists of intelligence professionals, IT experts, and special investigators. Cyber-attacks may threaten an individual, a company, a financial institution, or a nation-state. Criminals may reside virtually anywhere, and their malicious activities may cross international borders with impunity. Identity theft, hacking, disabling or misusing websites or computer networks, and phishing attacks are some of the more common offenses.

Our Cyber Intelligence Practice provides technical and strategic support to our clients in the following areas:

  • Internet, Mobile Devices, and Computer Forensics
  • Data Breach and Incidence Response
  • Prevention Measures, Cyber Tracing
  • Cyber Threat Investigations
  • Phishing Attacks, Business Email Compromise /CEO Fraud

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