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SEC Rules pertaining to email

U.S. Security and Exchange Commission Rules 17a-3 and 17a-4


Rules for financial firms

SEC Rules 17a-3 and 17a-4, part of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, revised in 1998 and then again in 2002 detail rules for electronic record retention standards for brokers/dealers.

Rule 17a-3 spells out which records brokers/dealers must keep current, while Rule 17a-4 specifies how long those records must be kept.

 

Rule 17a-3 and 4 dictates that brokerages, dealers and transfer agents must preserve electronic data generated on nonrewritable, nonerasable media for a period of not less than six years. Companies must keep logs of when the data is accessed and modified. These logs must show that the data, including that contained in e-mail and instant messages, has not been altered or deleted. Data relating to a particular transaction must be capable of being retrieved quickly for a period of two years from whatever media it is stored on, so a complete record of the transaction can be readily available should the SEC ask for it.

Read more at the SEC website:


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