U.S. SEC investigates Citi over unapproved employee communications

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The logo for Citibank is seen on the trading floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan, New York City

– Citigroup became the latest bank to be probed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in an industry-wide enquiry over employees using communication channels not approved by the company, it disclosed in a regulatory filing https://bit.ly/3BYlsgm on Monday.

The enquiry, involving some of the largest banks and financial institutions in the United States, was first launched in October by the regulator to assess if the firms were keeping an adequate track of employees’ digital communications.

The scrutiny highlights the challenges Wall Street institutions have faced in tracking staff communications in the work-from-home pandemic era, particularly over personal devices.

The company said the SEC was investigating Citigroup Global Markets Inc’s record-keeping compliance and that it was cooperating with the regulator.

The SEC has contacted several companies since last year to check if employees’ work-related communications, such as messages and emails, have been properly documented.

Last week, Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs Group Inc said it was cooperating with the regulatory body and providing the necessary documents required for the investigation.

In late 2021, U.S. regulators had fined J.P. Morgan Securities $200 million for “widespread” failures to preserve staff communications on personal mobile devices, messaging apps and emails.

(Reporting by Manya Saini in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)