JPMorgan Chase has been fined $4 million by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for accidentally deleting around 47 million emails in early 2018. The deleted emails were from and to about 8,700 email boxes, including those of up to 7,500 employees who had regular contact with Chase customers. Some of the deleted emails were sought by subpoenas in at least a dozen regulatory investigations, but could no longer be retrieved. The SEC also ordered the firm to "cease and desist from committing any future violations" of the securities law requiring broker-dealers to retain for at least three years the originals of all communications. This is the third time the investment advisor has agreed to punishment for failing to preserve electronic records. The firm in late 2021 agreed to pay $125 million in penalties for failing to preserve text messages and other electronic communications sent between January 2018 and November 2020. In 2005, the firm paid $700,000 in penalties for not preserving electronic records from mid-1999 to mid-2002. JPMorgan reported the deletions to the SEC in January 2020. The order noted that because the deleted communications "are unrecoverable, it is unknown – and unknowable – how the lost records may have affected the regulatory investigations."
JPMorgan subsidiary fined by SEC for deleting 47 million emails