As part of regulatory requirements, companies in the financial, insurance, legal and other industries are required to monitor, capture, and archive all business-related communications that take place between employees and clients.
Communication monitoring has become more complicated in recent years as regulators have begun cracking down at the same time that communication apps like WhatsApp and others like it have become more common for business use.
Communication Monitoring Challenges
Regulations globally are quite clear that financial and other highly-regulated firms are required to monitor business-related communications, regardless of the platform on which they take place. While most companies are easily able to track emails or other communications that use their internal systems, the challenge arises when employees start using third-party apps to communicate with clients.
Some companies have tried banning the use of such apps, but in a world where the vast majority of people use messaging apps to communicate for both personal and business matters, it is virtually impossible to prevent employees from using apps to speak to clients. Ban or no ban, if an employee uses an unauthorized app to communicate with a client, the company is still held liable if they fail to capture the conversation.
Why is Communication Monitoring Important to Regulators?
If there is no oversight of communications, it is too easy for employees to accidentally (or on purpose) leak classified information, breach policies, or engage in illegal activities. Regulators are responsible for protecting consumers and ensuring that the financial markets, for example, are operating efficiently. With no access to the content of relevant communications, regulators would be missing out on important information and would not be able to fully investigate suspicious activity.
Best Practices in Communication Monitoring
Regulators are only going to get more stringent, not less, and companies must have proper systems in place to ensure they are effectively monitoring all of their employees’ communications with clients.
Key issues for companies to keep in mind include:
- Be realistic – an outright ban on all third-party communication apps is not realistic. Employees are human beings as are clients, and everyone is used to using WhatsApp, iMessage, and other apps to communicate quickly and efficiently. Companies simply must accept that these apps are being used and find a solution that enables them to capture and monitor these communications.
- Respect privacy – while complying with regulations is crucial, companies must also prioritize their employees’ privacy. They must ensure that they are only monitoring business-related communications and not personal conversations.
- Stay updated – regulations are dynamic and new requirements are often added. It is critical for compliance teams to know which regulations are applicable to them and be aware anytime changes are made.
How LeapXpert Can Help
LeapXpert’s business communication platform was designed to meet the needs of any company that is required to monitor employee communications. With one unified platform, companies can capture and archive communications regardless of the platform on which they take place, while still protecting the privacy of the employee. Once captured, the data is stored and can be easily searched and made accessible to regulators if needed.