May 16, 2019

In this article, Jenner & Block Partner Erin R. Schrantz and Associate Andrew P. Walker discuss practical safeguards companies can take to preserve and limit communications via instant and ephemeral messaging apps in the workplace.  They examine how the proliferation of messaging apps has challenged the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) ability to gather evidence of potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and precipitated guidance from DOJ that companies seeking cooperation credit must have reasonable measures in place to control the use of messaging apps.  The authors offer strategies to implement sensible controls, including training personnel on permitted and prohibited uses of messaging apps, blocking downloads of certain “black listed” apps on work-issued mobile devices and creating a “secure container” on an employee’s phone to capture and protect corporate data and information.  “The companies that…deploy some commonsense safeguards, put themselves in a better position to avoid needless litigation, conduct investigations and lessen the risk of reputational harm.”