The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently announced changes to the Form ADV used by investment adviser firms to register with the SEC and state securities regulators. Two changes are of particular note. First, investment adviser firms will now be required to disclose all social media platforms the firm uses for business purposes, such as pages on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. In the event of a regulatory exam, investment adviser firms should also be prepared to produce records related to the content of those sites at any given point in time. The SEC rule does not require investment adviser firms to provide information about personal social media accounts held by employees or about social media sites whose content is generated by third parties and not controlled by the investment adviser. It is important to remember, however, that client communications made by the investment adviser firm’s employees on a personal account would still be subject to other applicable record keeping requirements, such as those relating to performance claims or solicitation. Click here to read the SEC rule release detailing the new requirements.
An investment adviser is required to prepare and submit a completed Form ADV as part of the initial registration process. In addition to the review by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) or state securities regulator(s) for purposes of determining whether to approve or deny an application for investment adviser registration, the Form ADV Part 2 is also used as the investment adviser’s disclosure document which is required to be provided to all investment advisory clients.