2014 Compliance & Ethics Symposium
October 28, 2014October 29, 2014
CEFLI recently completed its 2014 Compliance & Ethics Symposium in Baltimore, Maryland. The Symposium was a day and a half Forum that convened CEFLI member company compliance professionals and industry experts from several CEFLI Affiliate Member organizations to explore some of the most challenging compliance issues facing the life insurance industry today. These issues, as identified by CEFLI’s Compliance & Ethics Committee, included: unclaimed property, cybersecurity and privacy, fraud and AML, ERM/ORSA and annuity suitability.
A highlight of the event was a Roundtable Discussion among five CEFLI member company Chief Compliance Officers who discussed a range of issues facing Chief Compliance Officers in the life insurance industry today. The CCO Panel shared their perspectives on career development for compliance professionals, leadership skills necessary to become a Chief Compliance Officer, unique product-related compliance challenges in today’s low interest rate environment and managing the variety of regulators (both state and federal) that may impact a life insurance company and its operations. The panelists emphasized the importance of establishing strong relationships both internally (with business partners) and externally (with regulators) to serve effectively in the Chief Compliance Officer role.
The Symposium also convened a panel of industry experts who discussed the future of the Social Security Death Master File as it relates to unclaimed property compliance challenges faced by life insurers. The panelists discussed current efforts to finalize the certification process to gain access to the Social Security Death Master File. The panelists confirmed that it is likely that the Social Security Death Master File will continue to be looked to as a definitive source for information about deaths related to ownership of life insurance products for some years to come.
Cybersecurity issues represented another compliance challenge identified by CEFLI’s Compliance & Ethics Committee for review during the Symposium. Attendees received information about unique and up-to-date cybersecurity strategies being employed by life insurance companies from two leading industry experts on cybersecurity practices. The panel discussion emphasized the importance of internal cybersecurity controls as well as appropriate due diligence practices concerning potential cybersecurity risks associated with the use of third-party vendors.
The Symposium also included an extensive discussion of fraud and anti-money laundering detection practices. A panel of company representatives representing small, medium and large size life insurers discussed the strategies they employ to address state specific and federal requirements pertaining to fraud and anti-money-laundering issues. The panel discussed state specific requirements regarding special investigation units and the important role that SIUs play in fraud detection. The panel also reviewed current anti-money-laundering compliance challenges at the federal level and discussed a range of informational resources that are available to remain abreast of anti-money laundering requirements for life insurers.
Given the growing prominence of enterprise risk management in the oversight of life insurance company operations, CEFLI convened a panel of company representatives and industry experts to share their views regarding pending ORSA reporting requirements as well as regulatory expectations regarding the existence of a comprehensive enterprise risk management system at all life insurance companies. The panel also discussed a heightened focus on enterprise risk management in discussions with financial rating organizations. The panelists confirmed the important role of compliance professionals in the overall enterprise risk management process. The discussion emphasized that compliance professionals play an increasingly active role in ensuring a robust enterprise risk management program at life insurance companies.
The Symposium attendees heard luncheon remarks from Michael Lovendusky of the ACLI, who shared his perspectives concerning current unclaimed property legislative and regulatory activities. His insights and expertise concerning this complex and evolving subject matter allowed the Symposium attendees to gain a better understanding of the potential unclaimed property-related compliance challenges that may lie ahead.
The Symposium concluded with a discussion of current annuity suitability compliance practices from representatives of four CEFLI member companies. It was clear from the nature of the discussion that took place that life insurers have established robust systems designed to comply with the various components of annuity suitability regulation. The panel discussed, among other issues, techniques used to comply with producer training requirements and extensive annuity suitability protocols implemented at companies to review newly submitted annuity business. This discussion allowed the attendees to gain a better understanding of the range of possible strategies companies are using to address current annuity suitability requirements across the life insurance industry.
Overall, the Symposium offered an excellent opportunity for all attendees to receive up-to-date information from their fellow compliance professionals and a range of talented, industry experts on current and future compliance challenges facing life insurers. CEFLI would like to thank all of the talented panelists who provided outstanding insights that contributed to the overall success of the 2014 Compliance & Ethics Symposium!
CEFLI also would like to extend a special thanks to its Compliance & Ethics Committee for their identification of the key compliance issues that comprised the elements of this informative program for all Symposium attendees.