Systems and controls to prevent bribery

The following Financial Services practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Systems and controls to prevent bribery
  • How bribery may occur in a financial services firm
  • Financial crime guide—bribery and corruption
  • Ministry of Justice guidance on the Bribery Act 2010 for commercial organisations—the six principles
  • Bribery and corruption—international rules and requirements

Systems and controls to prevent bribery

The Bribery Act 2010 (BA 2010) came into force on 1 July 2011. It is aimed at preventing corruption in business and public life, and affects both public and private sector bodies, as well as individuals. There are four offences under the Act:

  1. bribing another person

  2. soliciting or accepting a bribe

  3. bribing a foreign public official, and

  4. (for a business) failing to prevent bribery

More detail on BA 2010 and its operation can be found in Practice Note: The Bribery Act 2010—an introductory guide.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) does not enforce BA 2010; nor does it provide guidance on compliance with the Act. Its role is to assist firms in complying with the anti-bribery law as part of its financial crime statutory objective, which requires it to pursue the objective of reducing the extent to which it is possible for a regulated business to be used for a purpose connected with financial crime. They do not need to obtain evidence of corrupt conduct to take regulatory action against a firm.

The FCA is also keen to ensure firms have appropriate systems and controls in place to prevent financial crime under the Senior Management Arrangements, Systems and Controls sourcebook (SYSC)—see SYSC 3.2.6 and SYSC 6.1.1 R. The FCA's definition of financial crime includes corruption, so goes further than BA 2010.


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