Although passed in 1977, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) was not significantly enforced until 2005. Since then, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have made up for the slow start in what has come to be called the "new era of FCPA enforcement."
Only three months after uncovering the Heartbleed bug, two new data security threats were discovered in the same OpenSSL software package used to encrypt the majority of web communications. Although not as dangerous as Heartbleed, security experts warn these new bugs still present windows of opportunity for hackers and should be taken seriously.
Allegations that payoffs were made to secure Qatar's successful bid for the 2022 World Cup games and reports of fixed soccer matches ahead of the 2010 World Cup illustrate the pervasiveness of global corruption and its potential consequences.
The “bring your own device” (BYOD) trend has become the norm at many companies and viewed as a way to both save money and increase productivity. By allowing employees to use their personal smartphones, tablets and laptops to access company information systems and applications, employers can avoid the cost of providing staff with separate work-related devices, while enabling employees to stay connected to work at any time, from any location.
The White House recently announced President Obama's intention to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees. If signed, the order would protect up to 16 million employees working on federal contracts from workplace discrimination based on their sexual orientation.
In announcing its first enforcement action for retaliating against a whistleblower, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) sends a strong message to firms: it is serious about bringing charges against companies that punish employees for reporting potential securities law violations to the agency.
On June 16, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that home-delivery drivers who transported furniture and appliances for a leading transportation and logistics company under independent contractor agreements should be treated as the company’s employees under California law. A copy of the decision is available here.
While many employers may feel uncomfortable in the face of headlines touting significant whistleblower payouts under provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, the False Claims Act (FCA) and other federal laws, studies show that most whistleblowers attempt to first report their concerns internally before approaching the federal government.
In an evolving global economy, expanding business opportunities often lead to more complex supply channels and business relationships that can increase corruption risks and burden efforts to comply with the applicable laws around the world. Organizations that fail to implement anti-bribery and anti-corruption programs face significant financial and criminal penalties for violating a number of U.S. laws, as well as the laws of other countries in which they do business. Furthermore, many of these laws — such as the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) — hold organizations accountable for violations incurred by their subsidiaries and/or third parties acting on their behalf.
A former employee of a Connecticut supermarket chain was recently awarded approximately $536,000 in a wrongful-termination suit filed after he was fired when he took time off for back surgery. A jury found the supermarket chain guilty of violating the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and a provision of the state Workers' Compensation Act when it denied the former employee's claim of a job-related injury, refused to allow light-duty accommodations after his surgery and thereafter terminated him for making such requests.