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Someone's got to pay for the wall! The Internal Revenue Service yesterday reiterated its warning that taxpayers may not be able to renew a current passport or obtain a new passport if they owe federal taxes. To avoid delays in travel plans, taxpayers need to take prompt action to resolve their tax issues. Here is the official notice (verbatim).

The European Union has issued a new blacklist for money laundering. The reaction from those appearing on the list, EU members and even the FATF has been rapid and forceful: the list is not acceptable. But there is more at play, including the imposition of direct control on those conducting business in the EU, by the EU without the filter of national parliaments. This example of federalism is not going down well in several large EU states. Also, the "war on dirty money" is a convenient diversion for governments who want the media to focus on that rather than something else. Also.. it might not happen.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The USA's Office of Foreign Assets Control has reached an agreement with a company from Connecticut over "apparent violations" of US sanctions against Iran.

Hang on... "apparent violations"? And the company has agreed to pay? It's time to abandon the linguistic and legal pussyfooting around.

Publication: 
chiefofficersnet

Case Summary: 

We couldn't pass on the chance to copy and paste the above headline from the USA's FBI media service. The case is about smuggling restricted goods in breach of US sanctions and not about edible nuts.

Type of conduct: 
Sanctions - Breaches

Two related statements from the IRS and other agencies highlight two specific risks. The first is password security and the second is phishing, etc. scams. By the way, "Summit Partners" (which appears in the statements) isn't a firm - it's someone's idea of a buzzword. Ignore it. It only means "other government agencies." Also, they have one thing dangerously wrong.

The city of New York has issued civil proceedings against five of the largest oil companies alleging that they are responsible for climate change and passing the resulting costs onto local governments. Others are joining in with California being the latest to sign up.

CoNet Section: 

As Asia continues to struggle to come to terms with a series of enormous natural disasters, the USA's Inland Revenue Service has come up with a scheme to help victims of similar events. It appears to be a groundbreaking idea that can offer some genuine assistance - if it's done right.

The USA makes a lot of noise about money laundering, etc. and since the early 1990s, it's been at the forefront of pointing out the inadequacies of other jurisdictions while having a surprisingly lax, even holey, regime at home. Let's not forget that there were times when death threats were made to politicians who supported an improved KYC regime and civil rights groups protested in the streets and in forceful terms in the a media that was more than happy to accommodate them. Yes, the USA PATRIOT Act improved matters and there have been incremental improvements but equally there have been serious mistakes. But today is a good day as raft of helpful requirements comes into force under the headline "Customer Due Diligence
Requirements for Financial Institutions." Yet, today is also a bad day: as usual with the USA, it's a half-arsed attempt that falls short of what is actually required.

A press release from the USA's Inland Revenue Service is headed "Many corporations will pay a blended federal income tax." For heaven's sake: what sounds like something special is nothing of the kind and is an example of buzzword-mania when simplicity would better serve the audience. It's time that government departments stopped trying to sound trendy and just said what they need to say.

Here's what the IRS needed to say.

CoNet Section: 

Recently, I found this old (March 2013) on-line chat with Amazon.com's US call centre lurking on my hard disk. Before deleting it, I read it. It's both very funny and an object lesson in the frustrations of dealing with people who have no power to control the situation their own company has created.

CoNet Section: 

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