Cognizant incurred $36 million in costs related to the investigation into bribes paid in India in 2017, taking the total costs to more than ten times the value of the improper payments, and said the investigation found the bribes were paid over a longer period of time. In September 2016, Cognizant informed the US Department of Justice and the US Securities and Exchange Commission that it was in violation of the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act due to payments made relating to the company’s facilities in India. Cognizant fired its President Gordon Coburn when it disclosed the bribery. The company's audit committee is still investigating the full extend of the issue.
“In 2017, we incurred $36 million in costs related to the FCPA investigation and related lawsuits in addition to the $27 million we incurred in 2016. We expect to continue to incur expenses related to these matters in 2018,” the company said in its annual filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
Cognizant had identified about $6 million in improper payments. Though the company has expanded the time frame over which the bribes were paid. In its 2016 annual filing, Cognizant had said the investigation had established that the payments were made from 2010 to 2015. The latest filing said the payments had been made from 2009 to 2016.