OFAC’s Latest Warning on Distributors

ofac

A Texas company that sells video production technology has agreed to pay $190,000 to settle charges that it knowingly allowed its goods to be sold into Iran, in our latest example of sanctions compliance enforcement from the Office of Foreign Assets Control.  OFAC announced the settlement last Thursday against NewTek, which sells live production and…

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SAP Nailed on Sanctions Violations

Software firm SAP is paying $13.1 million to settle charges that the company and its business partners violated U.S. sanctions law in the 2010s by offering software patches and upgrades to users in Iran and allowing Iranian customers access to SAP’s cloud-based technology services.  The settlement was announced Thursday by the U.S. Justice Department, along…

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Steel Firm’s Lessons on Sanctions Risk

ofac

Sometimes that third-party risk is a party mighty close to you. Such was the case with an Oklahoma steel manufacturer, which just paid $435,000 to settle charges that its chief engineer sub-contracted design work to an Iranian engineering company owned by the man’s brother. The company, Alliance Steel, agreed to pay the fine to the…

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OFAC Fines Manufacturer Over Iran Resellers

ofac

An Ohio business that manufactures pressure controls, switches, and sensors is our latest example of trade sanctions compliance gone wrong, and the steps a company should take to act on red flags before the business gets hauled in front of regulators.  The business, Cleveland-based UniControl, agreed Monday to pay $216,000 in penalties to the U.S.…

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OFAC Hits Bitcoin Processor

bitcoin

The Treasury Department has slapped a $507,375 fine against a bitcoin payments processor for sanctions compliance failures that allowed transactions with parties in Cuba, North Korea, Iran, and elsewhere — only the second such enforcement action ever taken over digital currency transactions, but probably not the last.  The firm in question is BitPay, headquartered in…

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OFAC Dings Bank $8.5M on Sanctions

UBAF

We have our first enforcement action of 2021 to review: an $8.5 million fine that the Office of Foreign Assets Control slapped against a French bank for sanctions violations related to Syria, with a detailed list of compliance reforms the bank implemented to avoid harsher penalties.  OFAC announced the enforcement action on Monday against Union…

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Deutsche Bank Dinged on Two Sanctions Cases

Deutsche Bank

Some red meat for all you sanctions compliance nerds: a Deutsche Bank subsidiary has agreed to pay $583,000 for two separate sanctions violations. One involved compliance employees improperly configuring a sanctions screening tool; the other, senior business and compliance managers rushing a transaction without appropriate due diligence.  The Office of Foreign Assets Control announced the…

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Cooperation Policy for Sanctions Violations

ofac

Compliance officers have a new cooperation credit policy from the Justice Department to consider, this one addressing sanctions and export control issues. It differs just enough from other cooperation policies we’ve seen from the Trump Administration that compliance officers need to give this one more attention. The policy was announced last Friday by David Burns,…

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When Sanctions and Cybersecurity Collide

cybersecurity

Compliance professionals talk constantly these days about cybersecurity, third-party risk, and sanctions compliance. Now we have an example from the news that is one headache-inducing brew of all three — and also, I fear, a harbinger of compliance and risk challenges to come.  The company in question is Hikvision, a Chinese maker of security cameras.…

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Interesting Action From OFAC

ofac

Compliance officers might want to take a close look at the wrist-slap that State Street Corp. received from the Office of Foreign Assets Control on Tuesday, for violations of sanctions against Iran. It’s a small but telling example of how a robust compliance program brings benefits, OFAC or otherwise. OFAC did cite State Street for…

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