observers have noted that the CCPA and the SHIELD Act could mark the beginning of a trend toward more stringent privacy legislation in the U.S., which could increase our potential liability and adversely affect our business. Furthermore, India has recently proposed enacting its own data protection legislation although the specifics of this are yet to be decided.
In addition to government activity, privacy advocacy and other industry groups have established or may establish new self-regulatory standards that may place additional burdens on us. Our customers expect us to meet voluntary certification or other standards established by third parties, such as TRUSTe. If we are unable to maintain these certifications or meet these standards, it could adversely affect our ability to provide our solutions to certain customers and could harm our business.
The costs of compliance with and other burdens imposed by laws, regulations and standards may limit the use and adoption of our service and reduce overall demand for it, or lead to significant fines, penalties or liabilities for any noncompliance.
Furthermore, concerns regarding data privacy may cause our customers’ customers to resist providing the data necessary to allow our customers to use our service effectively. Even the perception that the privacy of personal information is not satisfactorily protected or does not meet regulatory requirements could inhibit sales of our products or services, and could limit adoption of our subscription solution. Moreover, as our customers face increased scrutiny for data privacy breaches, they may elect to transfer the risk to us through contractual provisions which may subject us to increasing levels of contractual liability for data privacy breaches.
Anti-corruption, anti-bribery, and similar laws, and failure to comply with these laws, could subject us to criminal penalties or significant fines and harm our business and reputation.
We are subject to anti-corruption and anti-bribery and similar laws, such as the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977, as amended, or the FCPA, the U.S. domestic bribery statute contained in 18 U.S.C. § 201, the U.S. Travel Act, the USA PATRIOT Act, the U.K. Bribery Act 2010, and other anti-corruption, anti-bribery, and anti-money laundering laws in countries in which we conduct activities. Anti-corruption and anti-bribery laws have been enforced aggressively in recent years and are interpreted broadly and prohibit companies and their employees and agents from promising, authorizing, making or offering improper payments, or other benefits to government officials and others in the private sector. As we increase our international sales and business, our risks under these laws may increase. Noncompliance with these laws could subject us to investigations, sanctions, settlements, prosecution, other enforcement actions, disgorgement of profits, significant fines, damages, other civil and criminal penalties or injunctions, adverse media coverage, and other consequences. Any investigations, actions, or sanctions could harm our business, operating results, and financial condition.
Industry-specific regulation is evolving and unfavorable industry-specific laws, regulations or interpretive positions could limit our ability to provide services and harm our business.
Our customers and potential customers conduct business in a variety of industries, including financial services, the public sector, healthcare and telecommunications. Regulators in certain industries have adopted and may in the future adopt regulations or interpretive positions regarding the use of cloud computing and other outsourced services. The costs of compliance with, and other burdens imposed by, industry-specific laws, regulations and interpretive positions may limit customers’ use and adoption of our services and reduce overall demand for our services. For example, some financial services regulators have imposed guidelines for use of cloud computing services that mandate specific controls or require financial services enterprises to obtain regulatory approval prior to outsourcing certain functions. If we are unable to comply with these guidelines or controls, or if our customers are unable to obtain regulatory approval to use our service where required, our business may be harmed. In addition, an inability to satisfy the standards of certain voluntary third-party certification bodies that our customers may expect, such as an attestation of compliance with the PCI Data Security Standards, may have an adverse impact on our business. If we are unable to achieve or maintain these industry-specific certifications or other requirements or standards relevant to our customers, it could adversely affect our ability to provide our services to certain customers and harm our business.
In some cases, industry-specific laws, regulations or interpretive positions may also apply directly to us as a service provider. Any failure or perceived failure by us to comply with such requirements could have an adverse impact on our business.