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Hogan Lovells' Ann Kim, left, and Jamie Hennelly, right. Hogan Lovells’ Ann Kim, left, and Jamie Hennelly, right.

Public companies aren’t the only ones on their toes trying to navigate a pandemic-stricken economy. The economic uncertainty created by COVID-19 has regulators like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Division of Enforcement ramping up its efforts to identify and prevent fraud in the wake of COVID-19.

The SEC has been active in communicating with market participants during the pandemic. On March 23, the co-directors of enforcement issued a statement that warned market participants about the importance of maintaining market integrity. The co-directors noted that corporate insiders might more routinely have access to new material nonpublic information in light of rapidly changing market conditions. They urged public companies to be mindful of their insider trading prohibitions and Regulation FD to avoid improper dissemination of material nonpublic information. They also cautioned public companies to be cognizant of their established disclosure controls and procedures.

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