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The desktop risk assessment

Tom Fox | December 19, 2017

Both the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission make clear the need for a risk assessment to inform your compliance program. I believe that most, if not all CCOs and compliance practitioners understand this well-articulated need. The 2012 FCPA Guidance could not have been clearer when it stated, “Assessment of risk is fundamental to developing a strong compliance program, and is another factor DoJ and SEC evaluate when assessing a company’s compliance program.” While many compliance practitioners have difficulty getting their collective arms around what is required for a risk assessment and then how precisely to use it, the FCPA Guidance makes clear there is no “one size fits all” for anything in an effective compliance program.

One type of risk assessment can consist of a full-blown, worldwide exercise, where teams of lawyers and fiscal consultants travel around the globe, interviewing and auditing. This can be a notoriously expense exercise. Using...

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