Key Learnings from ACL’s FCPA Roundtables

Did you know…?

  • 37% of companies experienced economic crime in the last 24 months
  • Companies that experienced bribery and corruption often reported losses of over US $5M
  • Over 25% of respondents were asked to pay a bribe
  • 29% reported they lost an opportunity to a competitor they believe paid a bribe

With statistics like these (pulled from the PwC 2014 Global Economic Crime Survey), it is more important than ever for companies to focus on an effective anti-bribery and anti-corruption program. That’s why ACL hit the road with PwC to put on a series of FCPA roundtables. We gathered a focused group of senior executives from Fortune 500 companies in Toronto, New York City, Washington DC, Chicago, and San Francisco to discuss their toughest FCPA issues.

After a delicious breakfast buffet and plenty of networking time, the PwC Forensics team and ACL Solutions Consultants led the discussions by focusing on topics such as recent trends in enforcement proceedings, lessons learned from recent cases and hallmarks of a good compliance program. Below is a summary of the key learnings:

Recent Trends in FCPA Enforcement
  • The SEC & DOJ are often cooperating with foreign regulators by conducting parallel investigations
  • Enforcement structured to “reward” self-policing, self-reporting, remediation and cooperation
  • There are ongoing efforts to identify individual wrongdoers
Lessons Learned from Recent Cases
  • DOJ & SEC are more active than ever with 104 live investigations in 50 different countries
  • The Dodd-Frank whistleblower program will give a whistleblower 10-30% of recovered penalties >$1M related to securities violations
  • Fines vary greatly, but penalties are reduced with proof of compliance program in place
Hallmarks of a Good Compliance Program
  • Base your compliance program on Leslie Caldwell’s Top Ten List
  • Your program should be tailored to your company; there is no “one size fits all” solution
  • Risk Assessment, Continuous Monitoring and Executive Visibility form the three pillars of an effective compliance program

At the end of these events, we asked the attendees to fill out a survey about the current state of their FCPA program.

Here are the FCPA survey results:

Q: Does your organization have an enterprise risk assessment program that assesses the most urgent risks facing your organization, taking into consideration your strategic objectives, your entity structure and your regulatory environment?
A: 87% answered “Yes”

Q: Have you documented a comprehensive anti-bribery and anti-corruption framework of vulnerable process level risks and controls?
A: 72% answered “Yes”

Q: Have you implemented a continuous monitoring to test your control framework, material process areas, your agents and vendors by testing transactions across your enterprise?
A: 52% answered “Yes”

Interestingly, while almost 90% of the survey respondents have an enterprise risk assessment program, only half have a continuous monitoring program in place. This highlights a quote in PwC’s presentation:

“More often, we encounter companies with compliance programs that are strong on paper, but much weaker in practice.”

– Leslie Caldwell, Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division
October 1, 2014

Contact us today to learn about how you can strengthen your compliance program and protect your organization.

(Source: ACL Blog)

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