LOCK IT UP – SEC and FINRA Weigh In On Cybersecurity Issues At Brokerage And Advisory Firms

 

padlock digtal security concept iluustrationEarly in 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) announced its intention to conduct an examination of certain registered broker-dealers and investment advisers in order to assess the general vulnerability of the securities industry, as a whole, to cyber-attacks. On February 3rd the OCIE released the results of the survey in the form a “Risk Alert” (the “OCIE Report“). On the same day the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) released a somewhat related report entitled “Report on Cybersecurity Practices” (the “FINRA Report”) which focuses on both identifying cybersecurity issues faced by broker-dealers and recommending strategies for combating them. While the results presented in both reports are generally positive, there were some surprising and notable weaknesses.

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STATE OF THE STATES – An Update On Intrastate Crowdfunding (February, 2015)

Split Map 7As the S.E.C. continues to drag its feet on releasing final Title III crowdfunding rules, the intrastate crowdfunding movement shows no signs of slowing down. Here is a brief update as to the status of the enactment/use of intrastate crowdfunding exemptions in certain states.

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Crowdnetic and CNBC Come Together To Help Bring Investment Crowdfunding Into The Mainstream

CIndexCrowdnetic and CNBC have come together to create the first true Crowdfunding Index (or in this case indices) designed to track the growth of the Crowdfunding market. For whatever reason, nothing seems to quite make an investor stand up and take notice like good chart (particularly ones showing exponential growth). That’s why I see these indices as a huge step forward in brining Crowdfunding into the financial mainstream.

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Congressman Patrick McHenry Named Vice Chairman of House Financial Services Committee

o-PATRICK-MCHENRY-promotedCongratulations to Congressman Patrick McHenry who has a new leadership position in the House Financial Services Committee. Late last week, Financial Services Committee Chairman, Jeb Hensarling, named Congressman McHenry to serve as Vice Chairman of the full Committee for the 114th Congress. This is great news for both Congressman McHenry and, in my opinion, the crowdfunding industry.

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NASAA Brings Rule 506 Notice Filings Into The 20th Century With Launch Of Electronic Filing Depository (EFD) – But Is It Enough?

nassaIn late December of last year, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) launched, what it refers to, as its Electronic Filing Depository (EFD) system. The EFD system is designed to allow users to submit certain required “blue sky” notice filings in connection with exempt securities offerings to multiple states at once. Now if that does not seem like a big deal to you, then you probably don’t have to make these filings very often (or at all). For those of you who are like me, and who have had to file countless paper based notice filings, I am sure you will understand how monumentally more efficient even the most basic of electronic filing systems can potentially be.

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