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SEC will review complaint procedure

By Ross Kerber
Globe Staff / March 6, 2009
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Securities regulators yesterday outlined two new programs to handle tips about wrongdoing, following US officials failure to heed warnings from a Boston investment firm employee about Bernard Madoff. Madoff now stands accused of running a Ponzi scheme.

The Securities and Exchange Commission said it would pay up to $450,000 to a unit of MITRE Corp., a government contractor in Bedford, to review its procedures for evaluating tips, complaints, and referrals. The SEC gets hundreds of thousands of complaints via e-mail, phone calls, letters, and other means to its headquarters and 11 regional offices.

The review will scrutinize the agency's process for receiving, tracking, and analyzing complaints to improve its overall response.

Also yesterday, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, an industry group in Washington, said it has created an Office of the Whistleblower to speed reviews of what it called high-risk tips.

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