Industry Alert: Yahoo Messenger shutdown illustrates a key challenge of compliance

Yahoo’s recent announcement that it is shutting down its legacy Messenger client and moving to a browser-based application has thrown a wrench into the increasingly complex world of social media compliance.

Here are some questions compliance officers should be asking themselves:

What is the impact on my business?

On August 5, Yahoo will discontinue support for legacy versions of the desktop-based Yahoo Messenger platform, and for connectivity with all 3rd party platforms, including Bloomberg IB.  If your firm is using Yahoo Messenger, you must migrate to the new browser-only service, and/or choose a new system.

The Yahoo Messenger retirement also presents an opportunity to upgrade your communications compliance system to one that is capable of easily onboarding new data types and providing flexible support for legacy data, as well as providing dynamic communications surveillance and compliance tools.  This will help minimize disruption as messaging requirements and services evolve.

How do I remain compliant with regulatory requirements for communications surveillance?

The Yahoo Messenger for Web service has features that may raise compliance concerns for financial firms that are required by the SEC and CFTC to archive and monitor all employee communications.

Whether or not you plan to use Messenger for Web, firms operating in today’s zero-tolerance regulatory environment should focus on improving communications surveillance while ensuring compliant message capture.  The right compliance system helps firms mitigate risks and implement social media controls, as well as gain comprehensive and actionable visibility into how the business uses communication applications.

Bloomberg Vault, via its NetboxBlue acquisition, allows you to apply a consistent standard of sophisticated compliance monitoring and communications surveillance across multiple social and chat platforms–including Messenger for Web–regardless of the user front end.

What options does Bloomberg offer for secure messaging?

Bloomberg IB serves the financial industry’s broadest chat community, spanning the globe and the financial markets, by providing seamless integration of data and analytics with a full suite of compliance functionality. Key features of IB include:

  • Secure, reliable messaging with the entire community
  • Robust mobile capabilities
  • Easy drop-in functionality for sharing live charts, monitors, news articles and more
  • Seamless integration with front office surveillance solutions for compliance control, and with Bloomberg Vault for message archiving and analytics

Trading desks and compliance teams need solutions that enable them to assess and approve the use of social media and messaging tools by employees while meeting communications surveillance and archiving requirements.  As you consider your options for instant messaging, also consider adopting a system that can collect real-time data across all messaging services and help you analyze the data to ensure communication tools are being used appropriately.

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