Senate Committee Hears from OCC, FinCEN and FBI on Risks Posed by Anonymous Corporate Structures

Ballard Spahr LLP
Contact

Ballard Spahr LLP

Testimony Supports Bill Requiring States to Collect Beneficial Ownership Information at Entity Formation

As we have blogged, the proposed Corporate Transparency Act of 2019 (the “Act”) seeks to ensure that persons who form legal entities in the U.S. disclose the beneficial owners of those entities. Specifically, the Act would amend the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) to compel the Secretary of Treasury to set minimum standards for state incorporation practices. Thus, applicants forming a corporation or LLC would be required to report beneficial ownership information directly to FinCEN, and to continuously update such information.

If passed, the Act would build significantly upon FinCEN’s May 11, 2018 regulation regarding beneficial ownership (“the BO Rule,” about which we blog frequently and have provided practical tips for compliance here and here). Very generally, the BO Rule requires covered financial institutions to identify and verify the identities of the beneficial owners of legal entity customers at account opening. The issue of beneficial ownership is at the heart of current global anti-money laundering efforts to enhance the transparency of financial transactions.

On May 21, the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, held a hearing entitled: “Combating Illicit Financing by Anonymous Shell Companies Through the Collection of Beneficial Ownership Information.” This hearing, which provided fuel for passage of the Act, featured the exact same trio of speakers who had appeared before the Committee during a November 2018 hearing on “Combating Money Laundering and Other Forms of Illicit Finance: Regulator and Law Enforcement Perspectives on Reform,” which pertained to a broader set of potential changes to the BSA. The speakers were:

  • Grovetta Gardineer, Senior Deputy Comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy and Community Affairs at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) (written remarks here)
  • Kenneth A. Blanco, Director of FinCEN (written remarks here); and
  • Steven D’Antuono, Acting Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI (written remarks here).

Unlike the broader November 2018 hearing, which featured some distinct tensions between certain positions of the OCC and those of FinCEN and the FBI, this hearing reflected close alignment amongst the speakers. Every speaker stressed the advantages to be reaped by law enforcement, regulators and the public if a national database of beneficial owners was required and created. Only the OCC acknowledged the need to consider the issue and sometimes competing concern of the regulatory burden imposed on financial institutions by the current BSA/AML regime, and even the OCC seemed to assume that a national database on beneficial ownership would represent only a boon to financial institutions, as opposed to yet more data – however helpful – to be absorbed and acted upon to the satisfaction of regulators. None of the speakers addressed some of the potential ambiguities and problems inherent in the current language of the Act, such as the fact that the Act lacks precision and fails to define the critical terms “exercises substantial control” or “substantial interest,” both of which drive the determination of who represents a beneficial owner.

The Committee Chair: The U.S. Needs to Crack Down on Shell Companies

In his remarks, U.S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), the Committee Chairperson, referenced a second, upcoming hearing focusing on industry perspectives, and noted that, “[c]learly, the vast majority of anonymous corporate vehicles used today serve legitimate purposes and are formed with no criminal intent whatsoever. Therefore, we must bear in mind the amount of burden which may befall an overwhelming majority of small business owners.” Despite this nod to the regulatory burden facing industry, the May 21 hearing was decidedly focused on law enforcement. As both Director Blanco and D’Antuono would do during their testimony, Senator Crapo alluded to the fact that the international community has criticized the U.S. as a potential haven for money laundering and tax evasion by observing that organizations such as the Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”) “have identified not only a high potential for [the abuse of anonymous corporate vehicles], but have also identified far too many open investigations involving anonymous shells connected to money laundering, terrorist financing, corruption, weapons proliferation, sanctions evasion and a host of other threats.” After making the de riguer reference to the “Panama Papers” and “Paradise Papers” scandals, which rested on the alleged misuse of opaque entity structures to hide beneficial ownership, Senator Crapo offered a critique of the limits of FinCEN’s BO Rule:

But, the rule’s strengths and weaknesses are a product of its design to focus collection requirements for beneficial ownership information only on certain financial institutions.

The rule mainly helps financial institutions to mitigate risk, and the information received can provide some help to assist law enforcement in identifying criminal assets, accounts and national security threats from those who use the financial system.

The rule, however, does not reach all of the general population of millions of new corporate vehicles formed each year to operate in this country, nor especially those new corporations which are exported overseas that will never see an American financial institution, but still benefit from an American address.

Senator Crapo’s remarks set the tone, and the government speakers followed suit.

The OCC: Protecting the Financial System While Capping Regulatory Burden

In her remarks, Gardineer noted two competing concerns: (i) protecting the financial system from criminals who seek to exploit it for illegal purposes, particularly through the use of legal entities to shield their identities and illegal conduct; and (ii) not increasing the already large AML/BSA compliance burden on banks. To that end, Gardineer repeatedly stated the OCC supports a “standardized approach” for the verification of beneficial ownership data such as the establishment of “a consistent, nationwide requirement for legal entities to provide accurate beneficial ownership information” or “a centralized database for the maintenance of beneficial ownership information.”

In the OCC’s view, although the BO Rule has moved banks to create processes for collecting and verifying beneficial ownership information, it also has created challenges and costs for banks while leaving significant gaps. These challenges and costs relate to verifying beneficial ownership information, recordkeeping, training, and updating information. Collecting information on foreign legal entities is particularly challenging, even though the need is greater, because cross-border transactions can present a greater risk of money laundering and terrorist financing.

Gardineer stated that, due to the lack of reliable sources or databases, the biggest challenge with implementation of the BO Rule has been with the banks’ ability to verify the information their legal entity customers provide regarding beneficial ownership. Because states or tribal governments generally do not collect beneficial ownership information, “there is no consistent system banks can access and rely upon to verify that the ownership and control information obtained from their customers are accurate.”

Moreover, in the OCC’s view, the BO Rule’s “inflexible threshold” requiring banks to identify only persons who own 25% or more of a legal entity, allows “bad actors” to structure their ownership level below the 25% threshold in order to remain anonymous. The OCC would support “a consistent, nationwide requirement that cannot be easily circumvented.” However the OCC offered no suggestion as to what that requirement should be (other than implying it should be less than 25%).

The OCC also called out the recordkeeping burden imposed on banks by the Rule, in particular the Rule’s requirement that banks re-confirm beneficial ownership information for a legal entity customer each time that customer opens a new account, regardless of the associated risk.

In the OCC’s view, the way to address these challenges, as stated previously, is to establish “a consistent, nationwide requirement for legal entities to provide accurate beneficial ownership information” or “a centralized database for the maintenance of beneficial ownership information.” Upon formation, the legal entity would provide beneficial ownership information in “a consistent format” and the information would be updated on a regular basis. There would be several benefits to such a system. First, it would allow law enforcement to focus on substantive investigations, rather than spending time on obtaining and verifying beneficial ownership information. Second, it would reduce the regulatory burden on banks by providing them with an easier and more efficient method for verifying beneficial ownership information. Third, a central database would allow banks to spend less time on “training, reporting and processing paperwork.” Finally, legal entity customers would benefit by not having to supply their banks with the often burdensome and duplicative information currently required.

The OCC sees the BO Rule as only a partial step toward achieving the dual objectives of identifying anonymous beneficial owners who could be engaging in criminal conduct and supporting law enforcement in their fight to protect the integrity of our financial system. Banks alone cannot meet these enforcement goals – there must be other sources of “meaningful, accurate and timely information.” For this reason, the OCC supports the establishment of a “consistent, nationwide system” for legal entities to provide beneficial ownership information.

FinCEN: National Security is Linked to Beneficial Ownership Information

In his remarks, FinCEN Director Blanco declared that a lack of clear information identifying the bad “actors behind front companies” has turned shell corporations into mechanisms to “hide, support, prolong, [and] foster” criminal enterprises related to financial Ponzi schemes, narcotics, arms, and drug trafficking, financing of terrorist organizations, and kleptocrats’ efforts to retain and use their illicit gains. According to Director Blanco, the use of shell corporations thwarts law enforcement efforts to disrupt these global threats and identify sanctions evaders which would ultimately incentivize a change in bad behaviors. With clearer information, the Office of Foreign Asset Control (“OFAC”) and FinCEN could more effectively secure the nation and achieve foreign policy goals. The purpose of Director Blanco’s remarks were clear – to stress to the Committee the extent and variety of instances in which shell corporations are used to hide and launder assets – and more particularly the plight of victims of schemes hidden behind a corporate veil.

Director Blanco did not dwell on regulatory nuance. He began with an anecdote about a Russian arms dealer known as the “The Merchant of Death,” who sold weapons to terrorist organizations (specifically FARC), with the help of at least 12 shell corporations in Texas, Florida and Delaware. Shell corporations were used to hide nearly $1.2 billion in assets stolen from elderly investors during the course of a Ponzi scheme. And kleptocrats, such as Alejandro Andrade Cedeno, allegedly hid over $1 billion in bribes which he channeled through U.S. shell corporations.

For Director Blanco, the issue of collecting beneficial ownership information at the formation of a corporation is a question of national security and safety of United States citizens. “Opaque corporate structures such as shell corporations facilitate anonymous access to the financial system for every type of criminal and terrorist activity.” Director Blanco noted that FinCEN’s BO Rule was a crucial first step in closing a “national security gap,” but urged that such information must be gathered at the corporate formation stage – it is indeed the second critical step.

Such a database would all law enforcement to “follow the money” — a tactic that has, according to Director Blanco, resulted in the uncovering of criminal organizations that threaten the rule of law and integrity of the global financial system. Speaking from his experience as a former prosecutor, Director Blanco noted how the existence of a repository of information regarding shell companies’ true owners would save law enforcement resources, prevent the flight of assets, and destruction of evidence.

Finally, collaboration with foreign counterparts according to Director Blanco is vital to combatting sophisticated white-collar criminals. Although the U.S. should be able to provide beneficial ownership information, our current process, which is long and drawn-out, has been identified by FATF as one of the most critical gaps in the United States’ compliance with its standards. The lack of beneficial ownership slows investigations and leads to resource- and time-intensive processes which ultimately hinder international investigations. Director Blanco noted that many of our allies have begun to collect beneficial ownership information at the incorporation stage and have made such information accessible to law enforcement. In contrast, our lack of global leadership in this arena is to Director Blanco, “perplexing.”

The FBI: Investigations are Stymied by Lack of Beneficial Ownership Information

Acting Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI Steven M. D’Antuono echoed the law enforcement benefit of such a repository. As with Director Blanco’s remarks, D’Antuono focused on the resource intensive nature of the current process for identifying beneficial owners – and the concern that criminals exploit this time-consuming and costly process to conceal nefarious activities and delay or handicap ongoing investigations. Currently, the identification of beneficial owners is a slow-moving legal process that may traverse multiple jurisdictions.

D’Antuono began by noting the near complete lack of transparency into beneficial ownership in the United States has led FATF to highlight (in multiple assessments) the various money laundering vulnerabilities faced by the United States. For instance in FATF’s Guidance on Transparency and Beneficial Ownership, it found that countries should take measures to prevent the misuse “legal persons” such as shell companies, corporate structures, and other entity structures, and ensure that legal persons are sufficiently “transparent.” FATF urged countries to institute programs that allowed for adequate, accurate, and timely information on beneficial owners that can be accessed judiciously and without impediments.

Additionally, the 2016 Mutual Evaluation Report (“MER”), referenced in Director Blanco’s comments, stated that “serious gaps in the legal framework prevent access to accurate beneficial ownership information in a timely manner,” and that “fundamental improvements are needed in these areas.”

D’Antuono also referenced the National Money Laundering Risk Assessment authored by the Department of Treasury which observed that the use of legal entities constitute a significant money laundering risk especially when ownership trails lead overseas and involve numerous layers. Moreover, the assessment noted that U.S. law enforcement agencies have no systematic way to obtain information on beneficial owners of legal entities. The ease with which companies can be incorporated under state law, and how little information is generally required about companies’ owners or activities, raises concern about a lack of transparency.” These impediments result in a resource intensive process, which unnecessarily delays important investigations and ultimately, attracts bad actors to the United States.

D’Antuono’s proposed solution is the same as Director Blanco’s – entities should be required to disclose beneficial ownership information and a central repository of that information should be maintained and be made available to law enforcement and regulators. And like Director Blanco, D’Antuono made a point to demonstrate that access to true owner information of legal entities is the norm among our allies. He pointed to the European Union (“EU”)’s Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive, which requires EU member states to hold accurate and current information on beneficial ownership. D’Antuono described the role of a central register, and noted that the EU’s Fifth Money Laundering Directive requires public access to such data with some exceptions and addresses the necessity of sharing information between member states.

Unlike Director Blanco, D’Antuono made explicit that the lack of access to beneficial ownership information has hindered investigations, including the investigation into kleptocracies and forfeitures of illegally gotten gains from such investigations titled mostly in the name of shell companies. He also described investigations into political corruption, some of which were revealed in the Panama Papers as clients of the former law firm Mossack Fonseca. Mossack Fonseca allegedly opened thousands of shell companies for various individuals, many of whom they could not identify and who turned out to be international narcotics traffickers. Moreover, D’Antuono noted that Mossack Fonseca opened accounts for Americans or individuals involved with U.S. based commerce. And Mossack Fonseca as a law firm allegedly helped to obscure the names of true beneficial owners.

Finally, D’Antuono pointed out the wide range of criminal enterprises that shell companies help to conceal and further, including:

  • sanctions evasion by a Chinese national who used U.S. businesses to facilitate the supply of military and metallurgical items to Iran;
  • crimes against children/human trafficking involving Backpage.com and the concealment of receipt of money from people purchasing ads;
  • investment fraud which given the convoluted nature of the interrelated shell companies allowed the schemers to dissipate assets during a multi-year investigation; and
  • drug trafficking involving the purchase and sale of race horses.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Ballard Spahr LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Ballard Spahr LLP
Contact
more
less

Ballard Spahr LLP on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide

JD Supra Privacy Policy

Updated: May 25, 2018:

JD Supra is a legal publishing service that connects experts and their content with broader audiences of professionals, journalists and associations.

This Privacy Policy describes how JD Supra, LLC ("JD Supra" or "we," "us," or "our") collects, uses and shares personal data collected from visitors to our website (located at www.jdsupra.com) (our "Website") who view only publicly-available content as well as subscribers to our services (such as our email digests or author tools)(our "Services"). By using our Website and registering for one of our Services, you are agreeing to the terms of this Privacy Policy.

Please note that if you subscribe to one of our Services, you can make choices about how we collect, use and share your information through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard (available if you are logged into your JD Supra account).

Collection of Information

Registration Information. When you register with JD Supra for our Website and Services, either as an author or as a subscriber, you will be asked to provide identifying information to create your JD Supra account ("Registration Data"), such as your:

  • Email
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Company Name
  • Company Industry
  • Title
  • Country

Other Information: We also collect other information you may voluntarily provide. This may include content you provide for publication. We may also receive your communications with others through our Website and Services (such as contacting an author through our Website) or communications directly with us (such as through email, feedback or other forms or social media). If you are a subscribed user, we will also collect your user preferences, such as the types of articles you would like to read.

Information from third parties (such as, from your employer or LinkedIn): We may also receive information about you from third party sources. For example, your employer may provide your information to us, such as in connection with an article submitted by your employer for publication. If you choose to use LinkedIn to subscribe to our Website and Services, we also collect information related to your LinkedIn account and profile.

Your interactions with our Website and Services: As is true of most websites, we gather certain information automatically. This information includes IP addresses, browser type, Internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp and clickstream data. We use this information to analyze trends, to administer the Website and our Services, to improve the content and performance of our Website and Services, and to track users' movements around the site. We may also link this automatically-collected data to personal information, for example, to inform authors about who has read their articles. Some of this data is collected through information sent by your web browser. We also use cookies and other tracking technologies to collect this information. To learn more about cookies and other tracking technologies that JD Supra may use on our Website and Services please see our "Cookies Guide" page.

How do we use this information?

We use the information and data we collect principally in order to provide our Website and Services. More specifically, we may use your personal information to:

  • Operate our Website and Services and publish content;
  • Distribute content to you in accordance with your preferences as well as to provide other notifications to you (for example, updates about our policies and terms);
  • Measure readership and usage of the Website and Services;
  • Communicate with you regarding your questions and requests;
  • Authenticate users and to provide for the safety and security of our Website and Services;
  • Conduct research and similar activities to improve our Website and Services; and
  • Comply with our legal and regulatory responsibilities and to enforce our rights.

How is your information shared?

  • Content and other public information (such as an author profile) is shared on our Website and Services, including via email digests and social media feeds, and is accessible to the general public.
  • If you choose to use our Website and Services to communicate directly with a company or individual, such communication may be shared accordingly.
  • Readership information is provided to publishing law firms and authors of content to give them insight into their readership and to help them to improve their content.
  • Our Website may offer you the opportunity to share information through our Website, such as through Facebook's "Like" or Twitter's "Tweet" button. We offer this functionality to help generate interest in our Website and content and to permit you to recommend content to your contacts. You should be aware that sharing through such functionality may result in information being collected by the applicable social media network and possibly being made publicly available (for example, through a search engine). Any such information collection would be subject to such third party social media network's privacy policy.
  • Your information may also be shared to parties who support our business, such as professional advisors as well as web-hosting providers, analytics providers and other information technology providers.
  • Any court, governmental authority, law enforcement agency or other third party where we believe disclosure is necessary to comply with a legal or regulatory obligation, or otherwise to protect our rights, the rights of any third party or individuals' personal safety, or to detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security or safety issues.
  • To our affiliated entities and in connection with the sale, assignment or other transfer of our company or our business.

How We Protect Your Information

JD Supra takes reasonable and appropriate precautions to insure that user information is protected from loss, misuse and unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration and destruction. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. You should keep in mind that no Internet transmission is ever 100% secure or error-free. Where you use log-in credentials (usernames, passwords) on our Website, please remember that it is your responsibility to safeguard them. If you believe that your log-in credentials have been compromised, please contact us at privacy@jdsupra.com.

Children's Information

Our Website and Services are not directed at children under the age of 16 and we do not knowingly collect personal information from children under the age of 16 through our Website and/or Services. If you have reason to believe that a child under the age of 16 has provided personal information to us, please contact us, and we will endeavor to delete that information from our databases.

Links to Other Websites

Our Website and Services may contain links to other websites. The operators of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using our Website or Services and click a link to another site, you will leave our Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We are not responsible for the data collection and use practices of such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of our Website and Services and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Information for EU and Swiss Residents

JD Supra's principal place of business is in the United States. By subscribing to our website, you expressly consent to your information being processed in the United States.

  • Our Legal Basis for Processing: Generally, we rely on our legitimate interests in order to process your personal information. For example, we rely on this legal ground if we use your personal information to manage your Registration Data and administer our relationship with you; to deliver our Website and Services; understand and improve our Website and Services; report reader analytics to our authors; to personalize your experience on our Website and Services; and where necessary to protect or defend our or another's rights or property, or to detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security, safety or privacy issues. Please see Article 6(1)(f) of the E.U. General Data Protection Regulation ("GDPR") In addition, there may be other situations where other grounds for processing may exist, such as where processing is a result of legal requirements (GDPR Article 6(1)(c)) or for reasons of public interest (GDPR Article 6(1)(e)). Please see the "Your Rights" section of this Privacy Policy immediately below for more information about how you may request that we limit or refrain from processing your personal information.
  • Your Rights
    • Right of Access/Portability: You can ask to review details about the information we hold about you and how that information has been used and disclosed. Note that we may request to verify your identification before fulfilling your request. You can also request that your personal information is provided to you in a commonly used electronic format so that you can share it with other organizations.
    • Right to Correct Information: You may ask that we make corrections to any information we hold, if you believe such correction to be necessary.
    • Right to Restrict Our Processing or Erasure of Information: You also have the right in certain circumstances to ask us to restrict processing of your personal information or to erase your personal information. Where you have consented to our use of your personal information, you can withdraw your consent at any time.

You can make a request to exercise any of these rights by emailing us at privacy@jdsupra.com or by writing to us at:

Privacy Officer
JD Supra, LLC
10 Liberty Ship Way, Suite 300
Sausalito, California 94965

You can also manage your profile and subscriptions through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard.

We will make all practical efforts to respect your wishes. There may be times, however, where we are not able to fulfill your request, for example, if applicable law prohibits our compliance. Please note that JD Supra does not use "automatic decision making" or "profiling" as those terms are defined in the GDPR.

  • Timeframe for retaining your personal information: We will retain your personal information in a form that identifies you only for as long as it serves the purpose(s) for which it was initially collected as stated in this Privacy Policy, or subsequently authorized. We may continue processing your personal information for longer periods, but only for the time and to the extent such processing reasonably serves the purposes of archiving in the public interest, journalism, literature and art, scientific or historical research and statistical analysis, and subject to the protection of this Privacy Policy. For example, if you are an author, your personal information may continue to be published in connection with your article indefinitely. When we have no ongoing legitimate business need to process your personal information, we will either delete or anonymize it, or, if this is not possible (for example, because your personal information has been stored in backup archives), then we will securely store your personal information and isolate it from any further processing until deletion is possible.
  • Onward Transfer to Third Parties: As noted in the "How We Share Your Data" Section above, JD Supra may share your information with third parties. When JD Supra discloses your personal information to third parties, we have ensured that such third parties have either certified under the EU-U.S. or Swiss Privacy Shield Framework and will process all personal data received from EU member states/Switzerland in reliance on the applicable Privacy Shield Framework or that they have been subjected to strict contractual provisions in their contract with us to guarantee an adequate level of data protection for your data.

California Privacy Rights

Pursuant to Section 1798.83 of the California Civil Code, our customers who are California residents have the right to request certain information regarding our disclosure of personal information to third parties for their direct marketing purposes.

You can make a request for this information by emailing us at privacy@jdsupra.com or by writing to us at:

Privacy Officer
JD Supra, LLC
10 Liberty Ship Way, Suite 300
Sausalito, California 94965

Some browsers have incorporated a Do Not Track (DNT) feature. These features, when turned on, send a signal that you prefer that the website you are visiting not collect and use data regarding your online searching and browsing activities. As there is not yet a common understanding on how to interpret the DNT signal, we currently do not respond to DNT signals on our site.

Access/Correct/Update/Delete Personal Information

For non-EU/Swiss residents, if you would like to know what personal information we have about you, you can send an e-mail to privacy@jdsupra.com. We will be in contact with you (by mail or otherwise) to verify your identity and provide you the information you request. We will respond within 30 days to your request for access to your personal information. In some cases, we may not be able to remove your personal information, in which case we will let you know if we are unable to do so and why. If you would like to correct or update your personal information, you can manage your profile and subscriptions through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard. If you would like to delete your account or remove your information from our Website and Services, send an e-mail to privacy@jdsupra.com.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Privacy Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our Privacy Policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use our Website and Services following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, the practices of this site, your dealings with our Website or Services, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: privacy@jdsupra.com.

JD Supra Cookie Guide

As with many websites, JD Supra's website (located at www.jdsupra.com) (our "Website") and our services (such as our email article digests)(our "Services") use a standard technology called a "cookie" and other similar technologies (such as, pixels and web beacons), which are small data files that are transferred to your computer when you use our Website and Services. These technologies automatically identify your browser whenever you interact with our Website and Services.

How We Use Cookies and Other Tracking Technologies

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to:

  1. Improve the user experience on our Website and Services;
  2. Store the authorization token that users receive when they login to the private areas of our Website. This token is specific to a user's login session and requires a valid username and password to obtain. It is required to access the user's profile information, subscriptions, and analytics;
  3. Track anonymous site usage; and
  4. Permit connectivity with social media networks to permit content sharing.

There are different types of cookies and other technologies used our Website, notably:

  • "Session cookies" - These cookies only last as long as your online session, and disappear from your computer or device when you close your browser (like Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Safari).
  • "Persistent cookies" - These cookies stay on your computer or device after your browser has been closed and last for a time specified in the cookie. We use persistent cookies when we need to know who you are for more than one browsing session. For example, we use them to remember your preferences for the next time you visit.
  • "Web Beacons/Pixels" - Some of our web pages and emails may also contain small electronic images known as web beacons, clear GIFs or single-pixel GIFs. These images are placed on a web page or email and typically work in conjunction with cookies to collect data. We use these images to identify our users and user behavior, such as counting the number of users who have visited a web page or acted upon one of our email digests.

JD Supra Cookies. We place our own cookies on your computer to track certain information about you while you are using our Website and Services. For example, we place a session cookie on your computer each time you visit our Website. We use these cookies to allow you to log-in to your subscriber account. In addition, through these cookies we are able to collect information about how you use the Website, including what browser you may be using, your IP address, and the URL address you came from upon visiting our Website and the URL you next visit (even if those URLs are not on our Website). We also utilize email web beacons to monitor whether our emails are being delivered and read. We also use these tools to help deliver reader analytics to our authors to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

Analytics/Performance Cookies. JD Supra also uses the following analytic tools to help us analyze the performance of our Website and Services as well as how visitors use our Website and Services:

  • HubSpot - For more information about HubSpot cookies, please visit legal.hubspot.com/privacy-policy.
  • New Relic - For more information on New Relic cookies, please visit www.newrelic.com/privacy.
  • Google Analytics - For more information on Google Analytics cookies, visit www.google.com/policies. To opt-out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites visit http://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout. This will allow you to download and install a Google Analytics cookie-free web browser.

Facebook, Twitter and other Social Network Cookies. Our content pages allow you to share content appearing on our Website and Services to your social media accounts through the "Like," "Tweet," or similar buttons displayed on such pages. To accomplish this Service, we embed code that such third party social networks provide and that we do not control. These buttons know that you are logged in to your social network account and therefore such social networks could also know that you are viewing the JD Supra Website.

Controlling and Deleting Cookies

If you would like to change how a browser uses cookies, including blocking or deleting cookies from the JD Supra Website and Services you can do so by changing the settings in your web browser. To control cookies, most browsers allow you to either accept or reject all cookies, only accept certain types of cookies, or prompt you every time a site wishes to save a cookie. It's also easy to delete cookies that are already saved on your device by a browser.

The processes for controlling and deleting cookies vary depending on which browser you use. To find out how to do so with a particular browser, you can use your browser's "Help" function or alternatively, you can visit http://www.aboutcookies.org which explains, step-by-step, how to control and delete cookies in most browsers.

Updates to This Policy

We may update this cookie policy and our Privacy Policy from time-to-time, particularly as technology changes. You can always check this page for the latest version. We may also notify you of changes to our privacy policy by email.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about how we use cookies and other tracking technologies, please contact us at: privacy@jdsupra.com.

- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.