Compliance professionals are struggling to keep up with the explosion of communications channels, including social media and mobile devices, according to the latest Electronic Communications Compliance Survey Report from Smarsh.
The company’s sixth annual compliance survey found that gaps in enforcement, retention and policies remain very high, exposing firms to the risks of undetected fraud, errors and regulatory enforcement actions.
“Compliance professionals in financial services have a long and critical list of responsibilities that can impact a business, and the ability to benchmark their electronic communications compliance programs with those of their peers is a valuable exercise,” said Smarsh CEO Stephen Marsh.
Key concerns include growing regulatory scrutiny of electronic communications of all types, balancing privacy and compliance, management of the increasing number of communications channels, hackers and a dearth of personnel to meet the compliance burden.
Some 42% of respondents reported experiencing an examination by regulators within the past year, a significant increase from the 26% who reported examinations last year.
“Firms are looking to market themselves in new and innovative ways, and this creates more oversight work for compliance teams. This year’s survey demonstrates an immediate need to rethink the traditional approach to electronic communications supervision. The current linear approach of layering new content types on top of legacy supervision policies and processes initially designed for email is inefficient and ineffective,” Marsh said.
Key findings that highlight the compliance gap include:
- Some 68% percent of firms do not have archiving or supervision of text messages
- Forty-six percent of firms that use LinkedIn for business communications lack archiving or supervision of worker messages.
- Of firms that allow Facebook for business communications, 44% are without archiving or a supervision solution.
- For firms using Twitter, 29% do not have an archiving or supervision solution.
Contributing writer: John Davis