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Investigators Turn to Electronic Records for Answers

January 30, 2009

Wall Street Crisis Forcing Closer Look At E-records
Network World, January 20, 2009

Wall StreetWith Wall Street falling to its knees, it’s no surprise that people are now wondering who knew what and when in regard to the financial lending practices. One might think that electronic records would easily address these concerns, however it has since been made clear that retention regulations were only loosely followed before the market crashed. Thus, many questions will be forced to go unanswered.

Moving forward however, it’s a sure guess that electronic records will be taken more seriously and that regulations will be put forth with high expectations of compliance.

“Analysts warn that the fallout from the Wall Street meltdown will quickly lead to stricter enforcement of existing laws — including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ‘s Rule 17A-4, and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act — and perhaps some new ones targeting the financial services industry.”

Regardless if you agree with the increased supervision or disagree, as Bill Savarino, a partner at Cohen, Mohr LLP and an expert in e-mail retention and other regulatory issues, does, it is impossible to argue the importance of electronic records. Although they may seem mundane and irrelevant one minute, the next minute they might be the center of attention in a national investigation.

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