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Tuesday, March 12, 2013
UK's Serious Fraud Office Says Sees No Conflict In Autonomy Probe

UK's fraud-busting agency said it might have a conflict of interest in its investigation of Autonomy, the software company accused of accounting irregularities by Hewlett-Packard.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has opened an investigation into allegations about the circumstances of the sale in 2011 of Autonomy to Hewlett Packard.

However, it has been reported that the SFO uses an Autonomy product, Introspect, as a document management tool.

In a statement on Tuesday,, the SFO said that in order to ensure that there was now no conflict of interest, or perception of such a conflict and it was obliged as a first step to make inquiries to ensure that it could continue as the investigating body.

HP bought Autonomy in a bid to make it the centerpiece of a shift into software. However, a year after the purchase, HP wrote off three quarters of the British firm's value. The U.S. company alleged "some former members of Autonomy's management team used accounting improprieties, misrepresentations and disclosure failures" to inflate the company's apparent worth.

Autonomy has denied the allegations.

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