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For more than two decades, U.S. law enforcement authorities have sought to encourage companies to establish corporate compliance programs to detect and prevent illegal conduct by corporate personnel, and to self-report potential violations they identify. The Securities and Exchange Commission has been in the forefront of these efforts, offering companies the prospect of reduced sanctions in connection with self-identified and self-reported violations. The new Dodd-Frank whistleblower provisions threaten to undercut these longstanding initiatives by offering substantial payments to persons who are the first to report previously unknown information about possible corporate misconduct to the SEC.

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