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Control Chatter

September 2022

News that Control Professionals need to know

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Internal Control Chatter
Each month the staff of The Internal Control Institute reviews hundreds of articles related to Internal Control and Corporate Governance. Here are brief summaries of some of the top articles (along with links to the original article) that may be of interest to you.

Barclays (BCS) Sued for Exceeding Bond Sale Limit by $17.6B

Zacks Equity Research

September 26, 2022

A lawsuit was filed against Barclays PLC BCS in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan on Friday by two Florida pension plans — the City of North Miami Beach Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Retirement Plan, and the City of North Miami Beach General Employees’ Retirement Plan. Shareholders claim that BCS defrauded them with its sale of $17.6 billion more debt than regulators had allowed. Per the complaint, Barclays made “materially false and misleading” assurances in its annual reports that its internal controls over financial reporting were effective.There are claims that BCS overstated profits, and understated operating and “litigation and conduct” expenses by not disclosing the over-issuance in its 2021 earnings releases

Read The Article

OSHA Orders Wells Fargo to Pay Whistleblower $22 Million

By Guy Burdick

Sep 14, 2022 

On September 1, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that Wells Fargo violated the whistleblower protection provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act by improperly terminating a Chicago area-based senior manager in the company’s commercial banking segment. The agency ordered the San Francisco-based bank to pay the employee more than $22 million to cover back wages, front pay, interest, lost benefits and bonuses, and compensatory damages. “The evidence demonstrates Wells Fargo took retaliatory action against this senior manager for repeatedly expressing concerns about financial management they believed violated federal laws,” Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker said in an agency statement.

Read The Article

Airline pays reduced $41.5 million to settle FCPA offenses

By Harry Cassin

September 15, 2022

Brazil airline GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes S.A. agreed to pay the DOJ and SEC $41.5 million Thursday to resolve charges that it violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by providing improper payments to officials in Brazil to pass legislation benefitting the company. Pursuant to a three-year DPA with the DOJ, GOL agreed to pay a criminal penalty of $17 million. The DOJ charged the São Paulo-based company in federal court in Maryland with conspiracy to violate the FCPA’s anti-bribery and books and records provisions. In an internal administrative order, the SEC charged the company with violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal accounting controls provisions. Without admitting or denying the civil charges, GOL agreed to pay the SEC $24.5 million.

Read The Article

How to Implement an Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Framework

By Akos Vajda

September 22, 2022

What’s your risk management strategy?

Business success depends on avoiding risks. Otherwise, your business’s bottom line will suffer. That’s why you need enterprise risk management (ERM)! ERM refers to how you identify and eliminate internal and external threats from impacting your business operations. Fundamentally, a risk management strategy means reducing or mitigating risks.  Reducing risks is easier said than done because the internal business environment is always changing. In addition to the internal threats, you must assess the external macroeconomic factors, including inflationary pressures, supply chain bottlenecks, and legislative obstacles. Therefore, you must continually assess internal and external threats to manage risk effectively.

In this article, I’ll define ERM frameworks and how to use them to manage risk. Additionally, you’ll learn about the top software you can use to implement ERM. 

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How to protect your business against check fraud

By Remzi Savas

Sep 15, 2022

Whether it’s digital fraud, phishing and spoofing, or check and payments fraud, the reality is that many businesses (71%, according to a 2022 AFP Payments Fraud and Control Survey) unfortunately experience fraudulent schemes or attempts that can cost them time and money. The survey also found that the most common scheme (66%) currently impacting businesses is check fraud. While electronic payments have become increasingly common, ceasing to use or accept checks isn’t an option as many businesses and vendors prefer this payment method.

It’s important to take proactive precautions to not only protect yourself against check fraud, but to prevent it as well. Here are ways companies can protect themselves from check fraud.

SEC: The watchdog bares its teeth

By Tami Stark

September 9, 2022

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has followed through on its much publicized intention of more aggressive enforcement. For instance, in June, the regulator brought an accounting fraud action that included a clawback of a CEO's compensation, notwithstanding that the CEO did not have a role in the stated misconduct. Through this action, the SEC has made it clear that when there is a restatement of a public company's financial statements, it will exercise its powers under the Sarbanes Oxley Act to claw back compensation, even if a CEO or CFO is not directly charged with misconduct. Such compensation includes equity-based incentives and the profits from sales of a company's stock during the restatement period. This is known as a SOX 304 clawback and this action signals a significant broadening of this remedy, as the SEC is not requiring misconduct by senior management.

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Cos need to strengthen internal control safeguards to prevent corporate frauds: Study

Sep 8, 2022 

New Delhi, Sep 8 (PTI) Around 89 per cent of independent directors surveyed believe that the health of internal controls is not as robust as they are reported in company annual reports, according to a study.The study, conducted by CII, Protiviti Member Firm for India and NFCG on Independent Directors (IDs), brings to the fore an in-depth perspective on questions relating to the adequacy of internal controls and governance frameworks in companies.It is based on interviews with 100 Independent Directors participating from companies across industries, including multinational corporations, Indian conglomerates, and other businesses.

Annual reports of 150 companies were examined for two consecutive financial years, focusing on types and instances of disclosure around IFC by the directors and the auditors. Puneet Gupta, Managing Director, Protiviti Member Firm said internal Financial Controls form the bedrock for ensuring good corporate governance, preventing fraud and financial reporting irregularities.

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Only You Can Prevent Fraud by Using Internal Controls and Audits

By Neil Taurins

Sept. 7, 2022

When it comes to protecting your organization from scandal or, more likely, fraud, relying on internal controls and audit trails is a foolproof way to protect your organization and ensure its financials are safeguarded. To ensure your organization is protected from similar controversies and fraud: Use general organization-level controls to monitor who and when employees can access financial data.

Implement general rules to prohibit errant parties access to financial data. Segregate duties in your organization to create a system of checks and balances. Be good stewards of responsible record-keeping, such as those set out by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Authorize and track users that handle purchasing and accounts payable.

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The Internal Control Institute™ (ICI) improves organizational Internal Control worldwide by providing training, products and services and individual Professional Certifications
recognized internationally. The Institute's Board of Advisors has determined it would like to further expand into areas where it is not directly represented. ICI provides world-class
programs and its intellectual property to affiliates free of charge and shares all program
revenue with them. If your organization is interested in partnering with ICI to earn revenue while you contribute to the development of the internal control profession worldwide please contact Dr. Michael Pregmon, Jr., Chief Operations Officer, by email at [email protected] or by phone at 727-538-4113 in the USA.

Below is a list of WorldWide Affiliates currently serving the profession. If your area is not represented please consider partnering with ICI
2022 Certification Training Program & Exams

ICI and affiliates around the world have a busy training program scheduled for 2022. For more details on the CICS Training programs on offer visit the Events page on our website by clicking on the link below.

ICI World Wide Affiliates

Contact: Mr Aminur Rahman
Tel: +88 01749 400600
Contact: Soulémane BABA DAMAGUI
Tel: +0022997492600

Contact: Mr Humphrey Chawafambira
Tel: +267 75618647
Contact: Mr Eduardo Person Pardini
Tel: +55 11 2599 8360
Contact: Mr Eric Kamegne
Tel: +237 658 292 978
The website of ICI Cameroon is now operational

Our first CICS session in April is online only
Contact: Mr Qiu Jianting
Tel: 400-098-1119 or 010 68004176

Contact: Mr. Yves Dupont
Tel: 0032 2 305 35 25
Contact: Mr Summit Goyal
Tel: +91 9810 575 613
Contact: Mr Nereo Guzman Mendoza
Tel: +52 811 181 3514
Middle East
Contact: Mr Belal Abdul Jabbar
Tel: +962 6 5927171
Contact: Mr Yazid Berrada
Tel: +212 (0) 522-872-585
Myanmar & Cambodia
Contact: Mr Sanjeev Gathani
Tel: +65 9655 4633
Contact: Mr Joel Aluko
Contact: Mr Muhammad Farooq Hammodi
Contact: Mr Cosmin Serbanescu
Tel: +40 752 525 525
Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia & Taiwan China
Contact: Mr Bob Seetoh

South Africa
Contact: Ms Sedie Jane Masite
Contact: Ms Nadia Yaich
Contact: Ms Ilknur Tunc
Tel: +90 312 442 50 15
Contact: Mr Jesus Salazar Ras
Tel: +58 426 737 8096 or + 58 416 291 3788
Contact: Mr Nguyen Thanh Tung
Tel: 848 3803 5020
Contact: Dr Proctor Nyemba
Tel: +263 4 443124

Control Quotes:

The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward.

Amelia Earhart

About ICI
The Internal Control Institute™ (ICI) is a worldwide organization devoted exclusively to internal control and corporate governance. The Institute is dedicated to the development of world-class educational programs and best practice guidelines on internal control and corporate governance, based on the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the COSO internal control framework.
Visit us on the web at the Internal Control Institute