It’s Back! Pre-taliation Enforcement

pre-taliation

Oh good lord. The Securities and Exchange Commission just dinged a financial services firm in New York $209,000 for including a “pre-taliation” clause in its employee manual, an eye-rolling offense against whistleblowers that I thought had gone extinct in 2016. Apparently not. The firm in question is Guggenheim Securities, the broker-dealer subsidiary of hedge fund…

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A Thought on Whistleblower Programs

whistleblower

Last week the Securities and Exchange Commission doled out a $50 million whistleblower award, the second-largest award given in the award program’s 10-year history. The money, however, isn’t the telling detail in this case. The telling detail is that the award went to two whistleblowers, who worked together to bring a misconduct case to the…

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DoJ Dinged on Whistleblower Protection

whistleblower

Radical Compliance is never one to engage in schadenfreude, but for whatever this may be worth: the Justice Department has been dinged by its own inspector general for sloppy whistleblower protection efforts with its third parties. The inspector general, Michael Horowitz, sent a memo to senior Justice Department officials last week warning that the department…

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AML Reform and Whistleblowers

award

I try to be as cynical as possible about Congress, but this week may be one of those rare times when lawmakers actually do something intelligent. They’re poised to overhaul the nation’s anti-money laundering laws in a dramatic way, with a potentially huge gift to compliance officers to boot. That overhaul is the Anti-Money Laundering…

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Finally, SEC Voting on Whistleblower Reforms

whistleblower

The Securities and Exchange Commission will vote next week on reforms to its whistleblower rewards program, more than two years after the reforms were first proposed, and which still have the potential to complicate your pursuit of a strong speak-up culture. The vote is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 2. In theory compliance professionals will be…

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A Must-Read on Whistleblower Retaliation

Anyone who cares about a strong ethical culture and protection of whistleblowers — which should be all compliance professionals everywhere — should read a column in the Washington Post this weekend written by Alexander Vindman, the national security officer driven out of the military because his whistleblower report led to President Trump’s impeachment. Whistleblower retaliation…

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More Tales of Retaliation Against Audit & Compliance

pre-taliation

Alas, it’s time for more tales of retaliation against compliance and audit professionals. Several have streaked across my radar screen lately and we should always take note of them, since commitment to doing the right thing deserves praise and organizations trying to squelch speaking up should be called out. We begin with the Dallas Independent…

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Compliance Under Fire: Two More Tales

pre-taliation

Oh dear: we have two fresh tales of compliance officers suffering dire professional consequences for doing their jobs. Not the best way to welcome the Thanksgiving holiday, but the compliance community needs to stick together and study troubling corporate behavior when we see it. First is news from Australia. Westpac, the second-largest bank in the…

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Study: Second-Hand Reports More Reliable

whistleblower

Some news that’s both useful to corporate compliance officers and totally relevant to our political drama in Washington: fresh research shows that whistleblower reports based on second-hand information tend to be more reliable than those from first-hand reporters.  Moreover, second-hand reports are more likely to be about accounting or business integrity issues; and the more…

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Big: Senators Intro Whistleblower Fix

pre-taliation

A bipartisan group of senators has introduced legislation to undo the damage of the Digital Realty Trust decision from the Supreme Court last year, which said that employee whistleblowers must first report their allegations to the SEC if they want to claim whistleblower protections under the Dodd-Frank Act. This legislation from the Senate follows similar…

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