Cisi urges increased whisteblowing support

Cisi urges increased whisteblowing support

The Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment has called on the Prudential Regulatory Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority to go further in their support of whistleblowers in UK based branches of overseas banks.

The FCA's consultation paper proposes informing employees of UK branches of overseas banks of its whistleblowing rules, but Cisi believes the FCA could do more than merely “inform” these employees.

It suggests a requirement on the banks concerned to train staff on the legislative protection (if any) which is available in their home countries, should they choose to blow the whistle.

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The aim of this additional requirement would be to provide further guidance for employees “who may have little or no information about the whistleblowing law and/or regulation in their home country.”

Simon Culhane, chief executive of the Cisi, also contested why whistleblowing rules introduced by the FCA in October 2015 only apply to UK based deposit takers with assets greater than £250m.

The current PRA/FCA consultation paper on whistleblowing in UK branches of overseas banks does not propose any changes to that rule.

Mr Culhane said: "Why don’t these whistleblowing principles apply to all firms regulated by the PRA/FCA? Why should the size of the asset base of a firm determine whether a whistleblowing policy exists or not?"

“We also suggested, when the rules were published in 2015, that a protection fund be introduced, which would pay a whistleblower’s salary, if he or she lost their job because they spoke up.

"This could be for up to six months or, if shorter, the time it took for the individual’s case to be resolved at an employment tribunal.

"We maintain this could be a valuable safety net for those who wish to speak up, but who are concerned about suffering financially as a result.”