Category: General

Touting Corporate Culture to Excuse a Commitment to Compliance

There is no question that corporate leaders, senior executives, legal and compliance staff, and internal auditors recognize the value of an ethical corporate culture.  It is the latest “fad” in corporate governance, and it is a welcome development.  I have written extensively on this important trend and the value of a company’s culture of ethics and compliance. CEOs and corporate executives, however, have embraced this...

Julie DiMauro and Michael Volkov Video Discussion of FCPA and Compliance Issues

I had the honor of appearing with Julie DiMauro, a Regulatory Intelligence Expert, at Thomson Reuters Legal, in her regular videocast on important legal and regulatory issues. In our discussion, we review FCPA enforcement and compliance trends. The video is available HERE. Julie is a thought-leader in the regulatory and legal space. She is the Regulatory Intelligence Expert at Thomason Reuters Legal, and is a...

ComplianceNext — Michael Volkov Videos

Over the last couple weeks, I was recently featured in two videos highlighting the importance of building ethical corporate cultures. You can find them published on this online compliance community called Compliance Next. Here are links to two videos I recorded on the importance of corporate culture:Part 1 — HerePart 2 — Here In these videos, I consider why people slow down at school crossings. Is it to...

Trade Secret Risks, Criminal Prosecutions and Protecting Trade Secrets

Businesses understand that their trade secrets are valuable assets.  However, businesses fail to understand how vulnerable their trade secrets are to misappropriation and straight-out theft. The US Justice Department has been beefing up its enforcement in this area, relying on new and existing prosecution and investigation tools. Companies have to act with vigilance by protecting their confidential and sensitive trade secrets, and aggressively prosecuting civil...

The Dangerous Compliance Threat – Budget Cuts to Compliance Programs

A fundamental requirement for an effective ethics and compliance program is that it is supported by “adequate resources.”  This does not mean a bare minimum requirement; nor is this requirement satisfied by flat-lining a compliance department’s annual budget.  Someone is not getting the message straight – a compliance program has to evolve – that does not mean that it has to suck up more resources...

University of St. Thomas Open House on Organizational Ethics and Compliance Programs

On February 27, 2019, the University of St. Thomas Law School is holding an open house on its Organizational Ethics and Compliance Programs. Two days later, on March 1, 2019, the University of St. Thomas Law School is holding a virtual information session. The University of St. Thomas offers a unique curriculum for professionals interested in ethics and compliance. The flyer for the two events...

Ethics and Compliance Trends: Humans and Automation, Intelligence and Technology

For me, the year-end retrospectives have become a rite of passage.  While there has been modest changes and trends in the enforcement arena, I am amazed each year at the pace at which compliance as a discipline and a profession continues to move forward. While there is much that is written about compliance and current or immediate trends, in reality, on the ground, compliance as...

Merging Trade Compliance and Ethics and Compliance Silos

Business operations can be riddled with inefficiencies.  It is easy to spot them inside a company.  The same rule applies to ethics and compliance programs.  Given a specific global business configuration, ethics and compliance programs have to be designed efficiently to support the business.  For some reason, a number of compliance programs have been built with two separate silos – one for trade compliance and...

False Claims Act 2018 Year in Review – Making Sense of the DOJ Fraud Statistics

Jessica Sanderson, Of Counsel, The Volkov Law Group, joins us for her initial posting on the False Claims Act. Jessica can be reached at jsanderson@volkovlaw.com. On December 21, 2018, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) released its Fraud statistics showing $2.8 billion recovery under the False Claims Act (“FCA”) for 2018.[1] While this number is staggering, fiscal year 2018 FCA recoveries were down more than ½...

Eletrobras Settles SEC FCPA & Bid-Rigging Enforcement Action for $2.5 Million

In a December 2018 enforcement settlement, the SEC and Brazil’s Centrais Elétricas Brasileiras S.A. (“Eletrobras”) agreed to violating books and records and internal accounting controls requirements and paid a $2.5 million penalty.  (Here). DOJ declined to prosecute Eletrobras. Eletrobas stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.  The Brazilian government owns 51 percent of Eletrobras and appoints seven of eleven board members. The bribery...