August 24, 2017

Antitrust: FTC Adopts Investigation Reforms

This Ropes & Gray memo discusses recent a FTC decision to implement several internal process reforms that will streamline information requests and improve transparency in antitrust investigations.  The reforms include:

– Providing plain language descriptions of the investigative demand process;

– Developing business education materials to help small businesses understand how to comply;

– Adding more detailed descriptions of the scope and purpose of investigations to give companies a better understanding of the information the agency seeks;

– Limiting the relevant time periods investigated by the agency;

– Significantly reducing the length and complexity of instructions for providing electronically stored data; and

– Increasing the amount of time allowed for responses to improve the quality and timeliness of compliance by recipients.

Other measures include closing older investigations and identifying unnecessary regulations.  The FTC is also reviewing its data security investigations with a view to providing guidance to companies regarding what data security practices have been deemed sufficient.

John Jenkins