A quarter of Irish employees do not trust their own companies to act ethically and say dishonest colleagues are promoted, according to a new survey about corporate fraud by Ernst & Young.
More than a quarter of all senior managers in Ireland and over a third of employees confirmed that they believe that personal gifts are acceptable to win or retain business.
Overall, two-thirds of European executives acknowledge bribery and corruption are widespread in their country and 40pc say the problem has worsened during the downturn.
"There remains much work to be done by business leaders to clearly articulate how anti-fraud policies translate into acceptable day-to-day business behaviour," said Julie Fenton, a partner at Ernst & Young specialising in fraud.
Despite the high level of distrust, just 16pc of Irish businesses detected serious fraud this year compared to more that 30pc surveyed in 2010.