The European Court of Human Rights: Six principles for whistleblower protection

06 April 2021
Knowledge Base

by František Nonnemann

European Union member states are obliged to transpose the Directive on the protection of persons who report breaches of Union into law by 17th December 2021. It will be the first general whistleblowing regulation in many member states and, therefore, relevant case law will be very important for interpretation. The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) recently ruled over a whistleblowing case connected with the publication of the suspicions made by the employee. This decision sums-up six crucial principles for whistleblower protection, respectively for the whole whistleblowing process. The question of whether and when the whistleblower is obliged to use internal whistleblowing channels, and the obligation of the whistleblower to verify his/her suspicions as much as possible prior to the publication of the suspicious notice were examined. Continue reading…


Marta Andreeva

Global Compliance Program Specialist at since July 2020
Marta is passionate about developing a culture of compliance, increasing awareness and coaching and mentoring others.

Cécile Louchard-de Barsy

Senior Compliance Officer at Banque Degroof Petercam Luxembourg since september 2020
An innovative Compliance & Forensic pofessional who delivers efficient solutions for both financial and industrial players.

Ken van Ierlant

Digital Thought Leader
Member of the Board of Directors of UpGen. Experienced CEO / CDO / CIO in the field of transformation processes within internationally oriented companies.

Theodoros Kringou

Founder and Managing Director, Infocredit Group Ltd and ICG Middle East Commercial Services DMCC (Dubai, U.A.E.)
Theodoros Kringou, a self-made entrepreneur is the Founder and Managing Director of Infocredit Group Ltd and ICG Middle East Commercial Services DMCC (Dubai, U.A.E.).

FCA launches campaign to encourage individuals to report wrongdoing

05 April 2021

The campaign, ‘In confidence, with confidence’, encourages individuals working in financial services to report potential wrongdoing to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and reminds them of the confidentiality processes in place. As part of the campaign, the FCA has published materials for firms to share with employees, as well as using its events to highlight the campaign. It has also produced a digital toolkit for industry bodies, consumer groups and whistleblowing groups to encourage individuals to have confidence to step forward. Whistleblowers that report to the FCA will have a dedicated case manager. They can meet with the FCA to discuss their concerns and can receive optional regular updates throughout the investigation. Every report the FCA receives is reviewed and the FCA will protect individual whistleblowers’ identities.  Continue reading…

The FCA makes its announcement on the end of LIBOR

31 March 2021

The FCA has announced the dates that panel bank submissions for all LIBOR settings will cease, after which representative LIBOR rates will no longer be available. This is an important step towards the end of LIBOR, and the Bank of England and FCA urge market participants to continue to take the necessary action to ensure they are ready. The FCA has confirmed that all LIBOR settings will either cease to be provided by any administrator or no longer be representative immediately after 31 December 2021, in the case of all sterling, euro, Swiss franc, Japanese yen settings, and the 1-week and 2-month US dollar settings; and immediately after 30 June 2023, in the case of the remaining US dollar settings. Continue reading…

Shifting cybersecurity from a compliance to a risk focus

30 March 2021
Knowledge Base

Modern organisations now realise that cybersecurity is a crucial concern. Cyberattacks have grown in frequency and sophistication, with 3,813 data breaches reported in the first half of 2019, which was an increase of 54% over the previous year. And in light of COVID-19-related changes in workforce structure and an unplanned shift to remote work environments that might not be supported with the right infrastructure, companies became even more vulnerable to attack in 2020. While enterprises know that cybersecurity protection is essential to safeguard their companies, many envision cybersecurity protocols as a compliance-focused approach to address industry and governmental regulations, rather than looking at them from a risk analysis level. Continue reading…

EU Commissioner Didier Reynders about the Digital Transatlantic Economy

29 March 2021
Knowledge Base

EU Commissioner Didier Reynders recently spoke at the 2021 Transatlantic Conference. The participation of President Biden to the European Council showed how deep the alliance between the European Union and the United States is. We have a common willingness to work together to address the key challenges of our times: from the pandemic to the green transition. The recent visit of US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, was a chance to discuss how to achieve our common objectives of a greener and cleaner future for all citizens. The U.S. trillion dollar recovery package focuses on green investment. It has similar priorities to the prior established European Green Deal. The digital transition requires the same commitment.
Continue reading…

FCA reminds consumers financially impacted by coronavirus of the support available

27 March 2021

As the deadline to apply for a payment deferral ends on 31 March 2021, the FCA wants to reassure consumers in financial difficulty that support will continue to be available under the Tailored Support Guidance (TSG). Payment deferrals allowed firms to deal with unprecedented demand for short-term support very quickly. As the crisis evolves and demand for payments deferrals reduces, tailored support provides a longer-term framework for firms to offer a wider range of options which are tailored to a consumer’s individual needs and circumstances. The FCA has published finalised guidance for firms, to ensure that mortgage customers whose homes may be repossessed are treated fairly and appropriately, particularly where there are risks of harm to customers who are vulnerable, including as a result of coronavirus. Continue reading…

ESMA supports increasing corporate transparency through the creation of ESAP

25 March 2021

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator, has submitted its response to the European Commission’s (EC) targeted consultation on the European Single Access Point (ESAP). ESMA recommends a phased approach, which should prioritise financial and non-financial information of public companies. Steven Maijoor, Chair, said: “A single access point for information about companies is one of the key missing components of the Capital Markets Union. ESMA is fully supportive of the ambition to set up the ESAP as it will increase investor trust in companies across the EU and lower the costs of capital. ESMA is ready to take up a central role in setting up and running the ESAP as suggested by the CMU High Level Forum and the European Parliament.”

Continue reading…

Lieve Lowet

Lieve Lowet

EU Affairs consultant and lobbyist

How open will open insurance be?

24 March 2021
Knowledge Base

On 28 January 2021, the European Insurance and Occupational Pension Authority (EIOPA) launched a public consultation on a Discussion Paper titled “Open insurance: accessing and sharing insurance-related data”. In that paper, EIOPA explores whether and how far insurance value chains should be ‘opened’ up, i.e. whether and how far insurance-related and specific policyholder data should be shared amongst insurance and non-insurance companies. Continue reading…

Stepping up cooperation to tackle intellectual property crime

23 March 2021
Knowledge Base

The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation (Eurojust) are stepping up their cooperation to more effectively tackle criminal abuse of intellectual property rights in the field of counterfeiting and online piracy. A Service Level Agreement (SLA) was signed to boost Eurojust’s capacity and expand its expertise to support complex investigations in this field. As intellectual property (IP) crime is increasingly considered linked to organised crime and part of other serious criminal offences, it has become essential to intensify the fight against IP infringements, notably in the online environment. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, in which the problem of counterfeiting and piracy has gained new momentum with the illegal production and distribution of fake protective equipment and face masks, tackling IP crime is key to protect consumers and preserve a healthy economy and support the recovery of legitimate businesses, notably creative and innovative ones. Continue reading…