U.S. Officials Press Companies on Anti-Corruption Compliance

U.S. Officials Press Companies on Anti-Corruption Compliance

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Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 8:30am

CONTENT: Article

Samuel Rubenfield from the Wall Street Journal recently published an article, US Officials Press Companies on FCPA Compliance, that discussed several U.S. officials announcements at the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act conference in Maryland last Wednesday. Many speakers, including Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell, highlighted the importance and priority of putting compliance first in the work place.

“Ms. Caldwell, in her speech, encouraged companies to disclose potential criminal conduct to the Justice Department, and urged companies to conduct complete investigations. “We do not expect you to boil the ocean in conducting your investigation,” she said, “but in order to receive full credit for cooperation, we do expect you to conduct a thorough, appropriately tailored investigation of the misconduct.” Ms. Caldwell emphasized the benefits of cooperation, saying any company working with the department “not only helps the Department, but it helps itself.”

While Caldwell expresses the importance of compliance in general, the significance of an effective anti-corruption specific compliance program was also stressed. Many companies in fiscal year 2014 have faced large fines for being in violation of the securities laws of the Securities and Exchange Commission. At the FCPA conference, Director of the SEC’s enforcement division emphasized the benefits of an efficient FCPA compliance program:       

“Mr. Ceresney said nothing situates a company better to avoid FCPA issues than having a “robust” FCPA compliance program. “The best companies would put the compliance program ahead of business interests and allow decisions to be made to ensure compliance with the law, no matter the business consequences.”

The consequence of corrupt practices is growing as officials crack down on non-compliers and stress the risk associated with not having a compliance program focused on anti-corruption . Companies must realize that corruption can lead up to about 25% of procurement costs, and an effective compliance system should be in place in order to prevent these risks. In particular, an effective anti corruption policy system addresses that the anti-corruption policies are both consistent with risk and are being routinely followed. For companies who are interested in identifying corruption vulnerabilities, Source Intelligence powered by Create, is offering a complimentary anti-corruption assessment to assist in safeguarding your company with a quality anti-corruption compliance program.

If you would like to participate, please use this link to sign up for the assessment.

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