Corporate Ethics in a Devilish System

There is a mismatch between the law and corporate ethics. According to Boston College Law School’s Kent Greenfield it can only be addressed by changing the law itself, and aligning it better with ethics. In his paper Corporate Ethics in a Devilish System, Journal of Business & Technology Law 3: issue 2 (2008): 427-435, Greenfield […]

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Madoff and Markopolos on 60 Minutes

On Sunday night, 60 Minutes aired an interview with Harry Markopolos: The Man Who Figured Out Madoff’s Scheme. Last month, Markopolos supplied similar information to a Congressional panel. By its vary nature, the SEC does not stop a financial crime until happens. As with all prosecutions, the bad act needs to happen before there is […]

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Why I Blog

Why does this blog exist? Why do I blog? When do I Blog? If you want answers to these questions, I put together this page on Why I Blog.

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Blogs for Investor Relations

Louis Thompson, Jr. has an article in Compliance Week on using blogs for investor relations. Blogs: If Used Properly, an Investor-Friendly Tool (subscription required). Louis focuses on the Dell Shares blog used as an investor relations tool by Dell, Inc. and the GE Reports blog used by General Electric. Since this is a blog, I […]

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Policies for Private Use of Company Computer Systems and Mobile Devices

Mark E. Schreiber and Barbara A. Lee published an article on the New Liabilities and Policies for Incidental Private Use of Company Electronic Systems and PDAs. The discussion in the article comes from the decision in Quon v. Arch Wireless Operating Company, Inc., 529 F.3d 892 (9th Cir. 2008). In that case the court found […]

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Decision on Whistleblower Provisions of Sarbanes-Oxley

A federal court held that a former employee seeking on acted in good faith, but under an objective analysis, his belief that the company was engaged in fraud was not reasonable and upheld termination. Day v. Staples, Inc., 2009 WL 294804 (1st Cir. February 9, 2009) The employee complained that the company improperly handled regularly […]

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The Risk Management Formula That Killed Wall Street

Felix Salmon published a great article in Wired that looks at the Recipe for Disaster: The Formula That Killed Wall Street. The article looks at the widespread use of the Gaussian copula function. In assessing the risks in mortgage backed securities. The theory behind Gaussian copula function tries to overcome the difficulty in assessing the […]

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The 2008 LRN Ethics and Compliance Risk Management Practices Report

LRN published their 2008 LRN Ethics and Compliance Risk Management Practices Report (.pdf) (free registration required)  The report is based on a survey of senior ethics, legal, risk and audit professionals, with 461 completed surveys. The key findings of the report: Ethics and compliance programs are maturing Companies identify their top two ethics and compliance […]

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How Not To Fire Someone for Workplace Fraud

Staples fired sales director Alan S. Noonan was fired for padding his expense report. Executive Vice President Jay Baitler sent an e-mail to approximately 1,500 employees explaining the reason for the firing. The e-mail contained no untruths, but Mr. Noonan sued for defamation anyhow. Unfortunately for Staples, truth is not a defense in Massachusetts if […]

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A Benchmarking Survey on Third-Party Codes of Conduct

Rebecca Walker of Kaplan & Walker LLP is the author of a report on A Benchmarking Survey on Third-Party Codes of Conduct (register to download) sponsored by The Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics. The SCCE received survey results from more than 400 compliance professionals on how they deal with third-party compliance policies. As Rebecca […]

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