Monthly Archives: December 2017

Who owns your email?

“Lawyer Presses Mueller on Emails,” The Wall Street Journal, December 18, 2017 A4.  Questions arise after a government agency (later identified as the GSA) turns over Presidential transition team emails to Mr. Mueller.

Who owns the emails of non-governmental employees who use storage provided by a government agency?  And must the Special Counsel file a subpoena before getting information from a third party?

Where is your company’s email stored? Who owns it?

If there’s anything in those emails, are they “fruit of the poisonous tree” as the Special Counsel did not get a warrant?

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Filed under Access, Controls, Corporation, Duty, Employees, Government, Information, Internal controls, Lawyers, Ownership, Third parties

Net Neutrality

Which is better?  Government regulation or market regulation?  I guess we’ll find out.

“FCC Reverses Rules on Net Access,” The Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2017 A1.  The move reverses the utility-based rules that were previously in place.

Were the rules neutral before, or are they neutral now?  Does the government control how we get our information, or do market forces?  How much does it matter?

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Filed under Access, Communications, Controls, Governance, Interconnections, IT, Oversight, Third parties

Keeping track

Your can keep track on paper, or have a machine do it.  Which is better for compliance?

“Electronic Logs to Rule the Road,” The Wall Street Journal, December 16, 2017 B3.  For many years, larger trucking companies have used electronic systems to monitor how many hours their drivers drive, and thus comply with various DOT regs.  Now smaller companies will have to follow suit.


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Filed under Accuracy, Collect, Compliance, Controls, Corporation, Data quality, Duty, Employees, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Management, Oversight, Requirements, Third parties, To report, Value

Prosecution deferral

HSBC Set Free of Deferred-Prosecution Pact,” The Wall Street Journal, December 12, 2017 B10.  Five years later, HSBC has apparently cleaned up its act enough, and its independent monitor can now go home.

Independent monitors are an intrusive and expensive mechanism by which to avoid criminal conviction.  You pay a third party to watch to make sure you don’t do anything wrong going forward.  But they’re better than a criminal conviction.

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Filed under Compliance, Controls, Governance, Oversight, Third parties

Who are your employees, anyway?

“Firm Settles Russia Probe,” The Wall Street Journal, December 12, 2017 A5.  Company working on US defense projects had Russian employees who lacked appropriate security clearances (and who stored some material on servers in Russia).

No fine reported; company to institute new security protocols and thereby resolve criminal complaint.

One would have thought someone would have gotten more than their hands slapped over this one.

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Filed under Access, Compliance, Compliance, Controls, Corporation, Duty, Governance, Government, Internal controls, Management, Oversight, Protect

Sending a message?

“Bank Fires Adviser on Conduct,” The Wall Street Journal, December 8, 2017 B10. Morgan Stanley fires a former Congressman (Harold Ford, Jr.) who worked as a “senior adviser” after allegations of inappropriate conduct involving a woman.

The fired Congressman still works as a political analyst for MSNBC.

Does that send a message to the bank’s employees that you’re serious about your policies? What about MSNBC?

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Filed under Compliance, Controls, Corporation, Duty, Employees, Governance, Internal controls, Oversight, Policy

Dig deeper

The Chairman uses not one jet, but two (at once).  Who governs this?

“GE Digs Deeper Into Use of Jets,” The Wall Street Journal, December 13, 2017 B1.  The CEO and some senior execs were aware, as was one board member.

How did this practice go on?  It cost millions.  What else slipped through some very large cracks?

Who should pay back the shareholders for this waste of assets?

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Filed under Board, Controls, Directors, Duty, Governance, Internal controls, Oversight, Oversight, Protect assets