Chief compliance officer

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The officer in a C-suite that is primarily responsible for overseeing and managing regulatory compliance concerns within an enterprise is called the chief compliance officer (CCO). In most organisations, the CCO is accountable to either the chief executive officer or the chief legal officer.

Companies that operate in highly regulated areas, such as the financial services industry and the healthcare industry, have had this responsibility for a long time. Additional Chief Compliance Officers have been appointed at other businesses as a result of the string of accounting scandals that occurred in the 2000s, the Sarbanes–Oxley Act, and the recommendations of the United States Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

According to Scott Cohen, editor and publisher of Compliance Week, the rise of chief compliance officers (CCOs) can be traced back to a lecture given in 2002 by Cynthia Glassman, a commissioner for the SEC. In the speech, Glassman urged businesses to appoint a "corporate responsibility officer." In many cases, the duties associated with this position include taking the lead on enterprise compliance efforts, designing and implementing internal controls, policies, and procedures to ensure compliance with applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations as well as third party guidelines, managing audits and investigations. These are just some of the responsibilities that are associated with this position.