Texting on Private Apps Costs Wall Street Firms $1.8 Billion in Fines
U.S. regulators have imposed upwards of $1.8 billion in fines on more than a dozen financial firms for failing to police employees who routinely used messaging apps and other “off channel” services on their personal phones to communicate with one another. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced the charges on Tuesday after an investigation found that the firms failed to monitor how employees were communicating on work-related matters or keep records of those messages, as federal law requires. The banks that admitted wrongdoing and settled with the regulator include Bank of America, Barclays, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, each of which will pay $125 million to the SEC. The SEC imposed fines totaling $1.1 billion on 16 firms, including five affiliates of the large banks. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) imposed an additional $710 million in fines on 11 financial firms, some of which were also charged by the SEC. The biggest banks agreed to each pay $75 million to the CFTC.
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