A successful compliance monitor is someone who can re-instill the confidence lost by all parties following an allegation or an accusation of corporate corruption. It is a delicate role, which requires experience, flexibility and the ability to include all relevant stakeholders in the process; in many ways, the skills required of a good compliance monitor resemble those required of an exceptional orchestra conductor.
I was struck by the real motivation of the delegations to develop a standard that would be useful and effective for business. The desired outcome was not a foregone conclusion in the beginning. However, after three years of discussions during which ETHIC Intelligence played an active role and, with the superb leadership of Working Group President Neill Stansbury and his Secretary Mike Henigan, agreements were reached and the result is to be published in September 2016.
I think we can learn from the French diplomatic method used so successfully during the COP21 conference on climate last year. Specifically, the fight against corruption can only succeed if there is a joint mobilization by international organizations, governments and civil society included the business community. This necessity is gradually becoming a reality. Governments are mobilizing their efforts as evidenced by the May 12 global anti-corruption summit held in London and the recent bill introduced by French Finance Minister, Michel Sapin, on increased transparency in business.
A third-party assessment is an independent evaluation of a business entity or professional practice conducted by an experienced ethics and compliance professional. Its purpose is to provide an unbiased evaluation of company operations, assess its ethics and compliance policies and anti-corruption controls, and its overall ethical culture. Such an evaluation can help a forward-thinking company identify potential problem areas and improve its ability to manage the risk of ethical violations. Companies have found great value in using such highly specialized outside consultants because the assessments are focused, benchmark the company’s programs against industry standards, and are not influenced by internal politics.
I had in-depth discussions on corporate monitoring with prosecutors, monitors and compliance officers of companies that had been under monitoring, as well as with lawyers and auditors who had participated in the process.
From these, I was able to identify what I consider to be the hallmarks of a successful monitoring exercise.
This conference will focus on the latest in research and practice on the topic of anti-corruption Collective Action and business integrity, through a number of high-level panel discussions and interactive sessions that together aim to emphasize the business case for joint engagement against corruption. Practitioners from business, government, international organizations, academia and civil society will be on hand to share their experiences on what constitutes successful Collective Action and how best to make it work.
This comment was made by Georgina Philippou, the then-acting director of enforcement and market oversight of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) (formerly known as the Financial Services Authority (FSA), in March 2015 when imposing a fine on a Chief Compliance Officer for Bank of Beirut. This announcement came amidst a wave of fines imposed in 2015 by the FCA against compliance officers. Although the FCA has since slowed its pace against compliance officers, the new regulatory regime in the UK keeps compliance officers in the middle of the frame.
In 2016, ETHIC Intelligence celebrated its 10th anniversary of certifying corporate anti-corruption compliance programs. 2016 was also marked by the publication of the ISO Standard 37001 on “Anti-Bribery Management Systems”. Corporate anti-corruption compliance programs and their effective implementation have become standard business practices.
On April 5, 2016, Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell, who heads the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ), announced a new “FCPA pilot program” designed to motivate companies to voluntarily self disclose FCPA-related misconduct. In making the announcement, AAG Caldwell disclosed a newly released policy document authored by Fraud Section Chief Andrew Weissmann entitled “The Fraud Section’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Enforcement Plan and Guidance” (the “Guidance”).1
Certain countries, often small ones, have enacted tax legislation which makes it very attractive for non-resident individuals or companies with no commercial activity in that country to be domiciled there and invest using the local banking system. These countries who have few other economic advantages are then able to generate revenue and create employment in a tertiary sector.
What makes a good Compliance Officer? It’s a question every hiring manager, General Counsel and Board must consider when faced with the need or opportunity to bring that critical person into the business.
The compliance profession is still in its infancy. A couple of decades ago it started in the United States in the financial services and health care sectors, growing out of legal and audit and into its own role. As the UK Bribery Act came into force and more multi-national organizations were stung with fines for failing to comply with all sorts of laws, companies began to hire compliance officers in order address the ever-increasing legal and regulatory expectations placed on them from all angles. As compliance departments grow throughout Europe, Asia and South America, businesses must evaluate who to hire and how to determine what makes a good compliance officer.
Should a compliance officer be completely independent of company/corporate operations or should he play an active role in the operations team?
The report examines how public trust in officials may be eroded if there is a perception that the acceptance of gifts and hospitality by officials impacts on their decision making. The Civil Service Code (the Code) states that officials must not accept gifts and hospitality where it “might reasonably be seen to compromise their personal judgment or integrity”. The risk is that the official’s decision-making is tainted by hospitality they have received. The report looked at general civil service guidance and registers in BIS, HMRC and the MoD.
As compliance professionals we often have to overcome our own doubts, fears and insecurities. It can be a lonely place particularly when up against the C suite demanding results. It can also often be highly precarious; one investigation and you’re gone. So I have set out our role. Some of it may be aspirational but hopefully some of it will resonate and inspire.
Having dedicated previous chapters to the importance of the tone at the top and of training in the fight against corruption, I would now like to turn my attention to the anti-corruption compliance program itself: its organization, pillars and implementation.
After four months of negotiations, the US Department of Commerce (DOC) and the EU Commission have published a new EU-US Privacy Shield framework to replace the now defunct Safe Harbor mechanism for transatlantic data transfers.
The EC release, says the new Privacy Shield will:
• require companies to rigorously protect all EU personal data under their control;
• increase transparency in terms of US government agency access to personal data of EU citizens; and
• provide EU citizens with a right of redress in relation to complaints about improper surveillance or access to their personal data.
It appears to be the first time that a corporation has entered an agreement leading to a criminal judgment being entered against it under procedures adopted in France in 2011. For a variety of reasons, though, I do not believe that the agreement reached here offers a template that will be repeated very often in the near future. In fact, I doubt that there will be many “corporate guilty pleas” in France absent some changes in criminal procedures.
Anti-corruption training needs to include an educational component on all the potential risks of corruption, as well as a description of the company’s anti-corruption compliance program and procedures, but, above all, it should be an opportunity for employees to exchange with compliance managers. It should encourage employees to express their concerns and foster a group discussion on possible ways to address the risks identified.
The Whistleblower Protection Act, 2011 (“Act“ or “Whistleblower Act”) was enacted and received the assent of the President of India on May 9, 2014. The Act will come into force once it has been notified by the Government, which usually happens after the rules to be framed under an act have been promulgated. We expect that this will take up to a year; there is no prescribed deadline specified in the Act.