Improper and usually unlawful conduct intended to secure a benefit for oneself or another. Its forms include bribery, extortion, and the misuse of inside information. It exists where there is community indifference or a lack of enforcement policies. In societies with a culture of ritualized gift giving, the line between acceptable and unacceptable gifts is often hard to draw. See also organized crime.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on corruption, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up corruption? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.