In December 2016, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued over $14 million in fines for violations. A large portion of those were for inadequate supervision and record-keeping. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules 17a-3 and 17a-4 set out extensive requirements on how regulated entities must act. One major part of these regulations is the archiving of communications. The regulations state that organizations must preserve originals of all communications received and copies of all communications sent relating to their business, for a period of not less than three years. FINRA has made it clear that instant messages are included in the list of communications.

Is your organization using Cisco Jabber or Microsoft Skype for Business in your communications? Are you an organization governed by SEC and FINRA regulations? If so, your company needs to consider a solution that meets the requirements shown above. Simply putting records into a big database and hoping for the best is not a solution. When the auditors come knocking, you will need to be able to prove, that you can rapidly retrieve the relevant records in a timely manner. You will also need to prove that you review these records on a regular basis for possible violations. Thus, you need a complete application that includes critical items such as a complete audit trail, litigation hold, easy to use search functions, and automated flagging to meet these requirements.