Monday, November 16, 2015

2016 Renewal Fees

We are approaching the renewal period for the registrations of your firm. The registrations for your firm and your investment advisory representative(s) ("IARs") expire on December 31st of each year.

AdvisorAssist will be helping you through this process. This email is an initial notice of the coming process.

If the firm or any IAR(s) no longer conduct business in a state in which you are registered or notice filed, we can update your account before your renewal statements are generated by FINRA. Please alert us in reply of any such changes or, if you can provide a report of client totals by state, we can assist with this analysis.

On Monday, November 16, 2015, FINRA will begin emailing Preliminary Renewal Statements to all firms. AdvisorAssist will review your account registrations in detail and validate the fees calculated by FINRA. AdvisorAssist will download the statements from your FINRA account and manage this process on your behalf.

To maintain the registration of AdvisorAssist, LLC and your IAR(s), you must pay the required fee by December 18, 2015 by crediting your FINRA Renewal Account.

You may have also received notice directly from certain states. These are generally reminders only. The official process will flow through the FINRA system.

As always we are here to answer any questions that may arise. Please call us at (617) 800-0388 or email us at Support@AdvisorAssist.com if you have any questions.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Annual CCO Report?

CCOs. Have you started your 2015 Compliance Testing / Annual Review?

Firms registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") are required to have a CCO that is responsible for the implementation of its compliance program. Rule 206(4)-7 of Advisers Act (the "CCO Rule") requires that the CCO of an SEC-registered investment advisor assess the effectiveness of its compliance program at least annually.

State registered investment advisor may also be required to complete such report. Even if not explicitly stated, all regulators expect that that CCO will perform testing and validation of its policies, procedures and controls. And...as you know...if it is not documented, did it really happen??

AdvisorAssist has templates to help you get started and we are here to support you with this process. If you need support on your Annual CCO Report, please contact us at Support@AdvisorAssist.com.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Reminder: Annual ADV Delivery/Offer

Advisors with a 12/31 year end have 120 days following their year end to deliver either the full ADV2A ("Disclosure Brochure") and each ADB2B ("Brochure Supplement") to existing clients or send a summary of the material changes along with an offer to receive the full Disclosure Brochure and Supplement.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Annual ADV Amendment - Due March 31st

RIAs must update their Form ADV1, ADV2A ("Disclosure Brochure") and each ADV2B ("Brochure Supplements") within 90 days following their firm's fiscal year end. The annual update must incoude an update of the Advisor's assets, clients, accounts as well as a review of all disclosures to ensure they accurately reflect the business model of the Advisor. For help in calculating assets, please visit our blb post on the topic at http://blog.advisorassist.com/2014/09/how-to-properly-count-advisory-clients.html

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

FINRA SAA Deadline - 12/12/15

Attention all Advisors. If you have not yet performed the annual certification as the Super Account Administrator ("SAA") on your FINRA account, you must do so before February 12, 2015. After the 12th, your ID will be locked as will AdvisorAssist's. AdvisorAssist has been sending reminder emails to our advisors throughout this period and we'll send another reminder today to those that have not confirmed. If you happen to receive an email and you have already completed, please click the link in our email to inform us you have completed. If you have any issues, please call 617-800-0388, option 2.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Colorado Division of Securities reminds investors to discuss cybersecurity with their financial professionals

Cybrsecurity is quickly becoming one of the largest risks to your firm. Here's a communication that Colorado is sending to the general public. This really applies to all advisors across all states.

Colorado Division of Securities reminds investors to discuss cybersecurity with their financial professionals


DENVER — With an ever-growing list of financial institutions targeted by organized cyber-attacks, the Colorado Division of Securities, part of the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), today issued an advisory reminding investors of the importance of understanding how their personal information is being protected by financial firms. “The increasing reliance on technology in our daily lives leaves our sensitive financial information more vulnerable to unwanted viewing or theft without proper safeguards in place,” said Colorado Securities Commissioner Gerald Rome. In September 2014, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), of which the Division of Securities is a member, reported that 62 percent of state registered investment adviser firms participating in a pilot survey had undergone a cybersecurity risk assessment; 77 percent had established policies and procedures related to technology or cybersecurity. “Investors should think about the safety of their financial information, and talk with their investment professionals about what steps firms are taking to safeguard client information,” Rome cautioned. To help investors with that discussion, the Division suggests asking the following questions: Has the firm addressed which cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities may impact its business? Does the firm have written policies, procedures, or training programs in place regarding safeguarding client information? Does the firm maintain insurance coverage for cybersecurity? Has the firm engaged an outside consultant to provide cybersecurity services? Does the firm have confidentiality agreements with any third-party service providers with access to the firm’s information technology systems? Has the firm ever experienced a cybersecurity incident where, directly or indirectly, theft, loss, unauthorized exposure, use of, or access to customer information occurred? If so, has the firm taken steps to close any gaps in its cybersecurity infrastructure? Does the firm use safeguards such as strong passwords that are changed often, encryption, antivirus and anti-malware programs? Does the firm contact clients via email or other electronic messaging, and if so, does the firm use secure email and/or any procedures to authenticate client instructions received via email or electronic messaging, to work against the possibility of a client being impersonated? If the firm accesses client information or email using a smart phone or tablet when out of the office, what safeguards are in place to ensure a secure connection to the internet? “As a customer, you have the right to ask these questions and get answers you can understand in writing,” Rome said. “This is all part of the process of doing your due diligence and becoming an informed investor.” ### The Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) is dedicated to preserving the integrity of the marketplace and is committed to promoting a fair and competitive business environment in Colorado. Consumer protection is our mission. Visit www.dora.colorado.gov for more information or call 303-894-7855/toll free 1-800-886-7675. MEDIA CONTACT: Jillian Sarmo P 303-894-2878  jillian.sarmo@state.co.us www.dora.colorado.gov/dos

Friday, February 6, 2015

MA Securities Division - Compliance Training March 19, 2015

Attention MA State Advisors. The Massachusetts Securities Division is hosting a training session on MA requirements for state advisors on March 19, 2015. Chris Winn from AdvisorAssist will be in attendance to assist with any questions you may have pertaining to your firm. Details below
Dear Investment Adviser: The Registration, Inspections, Compliance and Examinations (RICE) Section of the Massachusetts Securities Division invites you to attend the Meet the RICE Section Conference on Thursday, March 19, 2015. Please see the attached brochure for more details and instructions on how to register for this informative event. You may also register using the link below. We look forward to meeting you. http://www.sec.state.ma.us/SecuritiesConf/RICESectionConf.aspx Sincerely, The RICE Section