Earlier this month, the Computer Security Division of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) issued draft recommendations on cloud computing (PDF). As many of you know, NIST is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Founded in 1901, the agency was the nation’s first physical science research laboratory.
In the e-discovery field, we know it better for its list of 65 million hash values of system and program files (the “NIST” list). We use the list to remove unwanted files before we process documents and other data. The NIST list is the gold standard for our industry and we use it every day.
NIST is involved in many other areas of inquiry, including the International System of Units (as discussed in my recent post, How Many Bytes in a Gigabyte? My Answer Might Surprise You). It also recently issued draft guidelines on security and privacy in cloud computing and launched the NIST Cloud Computing Collaboration wiki to encourage collaboration in refining its cloud standards. Continue reading
Corporate Counsel magazine recently issued a report that should cause multi-national corporations and their counsel to pay attention: Trend Watch: Foreign Bribery Actions Doubled Last Year.
Specifically, the magazine reported that enforcement actions under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) nearly doubled in 2010, rising to 76 (with complaints against 23 companies and 53 individuals). In 2009, the SEC and Justice Department brought 45 actions (against 12 corporations and 33 individuals). That number was a significant jump again from 2008 when the government brought 37 actions against companies and individuals.
The pace seems to be continuing as well. This month, Paul Hastings, one of the leading international firms advising on FCPA investigations, issued its first Quarterly FCPA Report for 2011 [PDF]. So far this year, it reports, enforcement continues apace, with actions brought against four companies and seven individuals, along with a blockbuster forfeiture and a number of guilty pleas and settlements. The forfeiture amounted to nearly $149 million and related to a high-profile arms contract case involving 22 indicted defendants. Continue reading