FINMA Opens Enforcement Case Against Credit Suisse for Spying

Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) announced on Wednesday that it has officially initiated enforcement proceedings against Credit Suisse over allegation of spying on its own employees.

As reported by Finance Magnates earlier, the Swiss investment banking giant was involved in spying its employees, including two former executives, by hiring the services of a security company. 

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Though many companies track the many activities of their staff, Credit Suisse’s actions raised questions on ethics and legality as it overstepped its bounds.

The revelation of the brutal corporate espionage last year tainted the reputation of the bank and also forced an overhaul of its top-level executives. 

FINMA appointed an auditor last December to check on the allegation that found that the investment bank indeed spied on its former wealth management executive Iqbal Khan and former human resources head Peter Goerke.

Though Tidjane Thiam, former Credit Suisse chief executive officer, denied any knowledge of the spying activities, he resigned last February.

“The auditor’s investigation has now been completed,” the regulator wrote in its official notification.

“FINMA has opened enforcement proceedings against the bank, in which it will pursue indications of violations of supervisory law in the context of the bank’s observation and security activities and in particular the question of how these activities were documented and controlled.”

In its official statement, the company denied any such spying activities as a part of its culture and found in an internal investigation that its former chief operating officer Pierre-Olivier Bouee initiated those controversial activities.

London to Madrid

Meanwhile, the bank is now preparing for post-Brexit activities and applied for a banking license in Spain as it has decided to move its investment banking business hub from London to Madrid. It is also heavily focusing on wealthy Asian clients and is aiming to double its Chinese office headcount over the next five years.

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