The concept of compliance in companies is due, among other reasons, to the increasing challenges in terms of regulations and responsibilities. But what really is the compliance or regulatory compliance and how does it affect companies?

Definition of Compliance

Above all compliance is the set of procedures and good practices adopted by companies to identify and classify the operational and legal risks they face. Also to establish internal mechanisms to prevent, manage, control, and react to these risks. In essence, it is about ensuring that a company complies with all laws and regulations applicable to its business.

Corporate compliance and Whistleblowing solution

Types of Compliance

There are several specific types of compliance including:

  • Penal
  • Tax
  • Financial
  • Laboral
  • Environmental
  • Technological
  • For the prevention of money laundering
  • For sports
  • and cybersecurity

A company may choose to implement one or more of the following types of compliance
or simply opt for an overall compliance management system.
Most importantly compliance management system that encompasses all the compliance risks it may face.

Sanctions and Consequences

Companies that fail to comply with their compliance obligations obviously expose themselves to serious penalties and sanctions.

In Spain, for example, companies were penalized with more than 2.45 billion euros until 2020 for not having an adequate program in place. Penalties may range from financial fines to loss of business or temporary disqualification.

Examples of offenses and penalties include:

  • Illegal trafficking of organs or their transplantation: Fine of three to five times the profit obtained.
  • Offenses related to nuclear energy and ionizing radiation: Fine of two to five years.
  • Contraband: A fine of two to four times the value of the contraband goods or merchandise.

The Future of Compliance in Spain

Reforms and laws such as LO 1/2015 have modernized the regulation of the liability of legal persons in Spain. These laws introduce systems of exonerations and mitigations and promote self-regulation by companies. In this context, the figure of the program of compliance becomes essential. Above all, this tool promotes a culture of precaution in companies, preventing the commission of crimes and protecting their reputation.

Compliance and Data Protection

One of the most sensitive areas in compliance
is data protection. Nevertheless, with the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the LOPDGDD in Spain, companies have the responsibility to protect the personal data of their users and respect their rights.

The benefits of a whistleblower channel

To have a whistleblower channel is not only an obligation but an advantage. Evidently, these channels strengthen the corporate culture, promote transparency and avoid possible legal sanctions. In addition, they can be valuable tools in specific areas such as the prevention of money laundering.
Especially prevention of money laundering
or the protection of minors in educational and sports entities.


Compliance is essential in today’s business world. It ensures that companies operate within the legal framework and protects organizations as well as their customers and employees.

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