Bloomberg L.P. said it has adopted new procedures to protect client information after an outside review found the financial news and data failed to restrict its reporters’ access to subscriber data two years ago.
The review, led by law firm Hogan Lovells and regulatory compliance firm Promontory Financial Group, said a number of journalists used subscriber data in their reporting, such as looking up contact information, but only identified two instances where the information or sensitive data were “clearly reflected in stories,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
The Promontory report also said policies were violated when a former employee posted files with client message given to Bloomberg, which ended up on the Internet. The report said the former employee was trying to convince Bloomberg’s senior management of his ideas for developing a “message-scraping” product, the Journal reported.
Bloomberg said the reviews included the examination of more than 500,000 news stories, 425 interviews of employees, 230,000 separate tests of client data systems and in-depth examination of more than 350 documents, including internal policy manuals, policy notes, training guides and client visit logs.
Bloomberg commissioned the reviews in May after reports surfaced that Goldman Sachs had complained that Bloomberg journalists were using confidential information found on the company’s financial terminals.
Bloomberg then restricted its reporters’ access to subscriber data and created a new position of client data compliance officer.
Bloomberg on Wednesday said although the Hogan Lovells/Promontory review concluded that the company currently has appropriate client data policies and controls in place, it has agreed to adopt recommended procedures to improve company practices.