Nobody believes Madoff acted alone in his 50 Billion Ponzi fraud that is evolving at Wall Street.
After reading this Marketwatch article on how the SEC plans to investigate the Madoff scandal, the perception is that SEC officials were aware of it and that some SEC names somehow were part of it or had conflict of interests.
Many now believes the SEC should not be part of any investigation. As more cans of worms are opened, for sure big companies will be named as accessories.
It appears that Madoff eluded the system, in part because he did his workarounds in the conventional way, avoiding any questionable electronic paper trail. That might be true for Madoff as the primary source, but not for secondary sources.
I bet you that as the story and investigations move forward, email mining and document data mining will be put into work. This is a great opportunity for IRs to put to the test new and experimental tools.
Remember the Enron Scandal and how data mining became the smoking gun?