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ASIC Calls for Unified Action Against Corporate Misconduct: A Push for Accountability

  • Business
  • Tuesday, 21 November 2023 19:43

ASIC's Call for Global Cooperation: Uniting Against Corporate MisconductThe Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is urging governments worldwide to collaborate in cracking down on corporate misconduct, emphasizing the need for accountability regardless of the location of major corporations' boards. ASIC Chairman Joe Longo expressed concern about the regulatory challenges posed by transnational companies, particularly social media platforms, and called for international action to address these issues.

Longo highlighted the difficulty of holding entities accountable, especially when they operate across borders. He emphasized the necessity of political cooperation and the involvement of key economies to impose accountability effectively. Longo acknowledged the complexities involved, stating, "We might get information from a regulator from a different country... the problem though is that's an incomplete situation."

Speaking at ASIC's annual conference in Melbourne, Longo reaffirmed the watchdog's commitment to combating greenwashing by investment funds and targeting superannuation funds that fail to act in the best interest of their retiring members. Additionally, he issued a warning that ASIC would take action against organizations inadequately investing in safeguarding against cyberattacks.

Longo, appointed as ASIC's chairman in June 2021, emphasized that while corporate Australia recognizes the challenges related to cybersecurity risks and artificial intelligence, it must meet community expectations by actively addressing these problems rather than prioritizing shareholder profits. He stressed the importance of putting customers at the forefront of business considerations, considering reputation and community expectations.

ASIC has set its sights on organizations ill-prepared for cyberattacks, and Longo asserted that the regulator would take legal action, including launching court proceedings, against board directors and executives who have not made sufficient investments in cybersecurity. The call for global cooperation reflects the growing recognition of the need for coordinated efforts to tackle corporate misconduct in an increasingly interconnected and digital business landscape.

In conclusion, ASIC's call for global collaboration against corporate misconduct, particularly in the realms of transnational companies and cybersecurity, underscores the increasingly complex challenges faced by regulators in the modern business landscape. Chairman Joe Longo's plea for governments to work together emphasizes the necessity of international cooperation to hold major corporations accountable, transcending borders and addressing regulatory gaps.

Longo's commitment to tackling issues such as greenwashing and insufficient cybersecurity measures reflects ASIC's proactive stance in upholding ethical standards and protecting investors. The warning of legal action against organizations and their leadership who fall short in safeguarding against cyber threats further emphasizes the regulator's determination to enforce accountability.

As corporate landscapes evolve, Longo's assertion that community expectations often exceed legal requirements highlights the importance of businesses aligning their practices with broader societal values. The focus on customer-centric approaches, reputation management, and responsible community engagement signals a paradigm shift towards a more holistic and ethical approach to corporate governance.

ASIC's proactive stance serves as a reminder to corporations that they must not only comply with the law but also meet the heightened expectations of the communities they serve. As the global business environment continues to evolve, the call for international cooperation becomes increasingly crucial in ensuring ethical business practices and accountability on a global scale.