Dilemma: Overheard on a train

17 August 2019

Tags: Fair competition

This dilemma addresses issues of confidentiality and inside information.

Marcus is on a busy rush hour train when the woman next to him answers her mobile phone. He can’t help overhearing her conversation – her voice is loud, and gets louder as she gets more and more annoyed with the person she is speaking to.

Marcus notices that the woman is an accountant and the person on the other end of the phone is obviously her client. He overhears that she is being accused of failing to give timely advice and the client is facing a large tax bill. From what Marcus overhears he can easily identify the client as a local taxi firm. 

The woman switches her phone off, exasperated.

Business has been slow for Marcus recently, and he could do with some more clients; especially now his son is about to go to university and he needs help with his tuition fees.

What should Marcus do?