Bloomberg vows to increase oversight in wake of client data privacy probe

Bloomberg vows to increase oversight in wake of client data privacy probe

Bloomberg has been told to put in place stronger barriers between its news and financial data units to prevent reporters accessing client information.

The firm has vowed to follow up on the recommendations of two separate external reviews of its procedures which were launched after it emerged in May that reporters had been accessing client information through its financial data computer terminals.

The first review, by law firm Hogan Lovells and compliance specialist Promontory Financial Group, looked into more than half a million Bloomberg stories, included 425 staff interviews, and saw 230,000 tests of client data systems.

Having already hired a client data compliance officer, Bloomberg has promised to add independent directors to the board's audit committee, hire a chief risk and compliance officer and carry out periodic third-party reviews of client data compliance controls.

In addition, tougher checks are being put in place to make it harder to access restricted data and monitoring systems are being beefed up to check for unauthorised access. Finally, Bloomberg reporters no longer have access to client UUID and ADSK screens or the firm's anonymous chat rooms.

The second review, carried out by former New York Times public editor Clark Hoyt, has made further, newsroom-based, recommendation, which have been accepted. These include the creation of a newsroom standards and practices task force and the appointments of a standards editor and an outside independent editor.

Daniel Doctoroff, CEO and president, Bloomberg, says: "We know we needed to evolve, and we have learned from our mistakes. We are already implementing many of the recommendations we received. Most importantly, we have carefully listened to our clients and other constituencies, and their suggestions are helping make us a better partner."

Comments: (1)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 23 August, 2013, 17:29Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

One side of the company does auditing, the other side provides consulting. One side sells subprime bonds, the other side bets against subprime bonds. One side makes news, the other side reports news. All of them sidestep conflict of interest by saying "Chinese Wall". The guy who invented the term deserves the biggest bonus.