The British Serious Fraud Office (SFO), which is said to be investigating Autonomy on charges of fraud, is also an Autonomy customer.
SFO uses Autonomy’s Introspect software to search through voice calls and emails for relevant information.
According to the New York Times, the authorities are in the process of determining whether this is a conflict of interest, which may hold up the investigation.
Autonomy is being investigated for allegations that it misrepresented its sales and accounting prior to the $11.1 billion sale to Hewlett-Packard. Autonomy CEO Mike Lynch (pictured, above) has spoken out to deny the charges of accounting misconduct.
HP disclosed on Monday that it is aware of a criminal investigation into Autonomy by the US and UK authorities.
In a filing with the securities and exchanges commission, HP stated that it has “provided information to the UK Serious Fraud Office, the US department of justice and the SEC related to the accounting improprieties, disclosure failures and misrepresentations at Autonomy that occurred prior to and in connection with HP’s acquisition of Autonomy.”
The 2011 acquisition of Autonomy would later earn the ignominious title as the worst corporate deal in recent memory.