On 15 July 2023 the Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority issued the new interpretative Guidelines of Legislative Decree no. 24/2023, implementing the EU Whistleblowing Directive.
The new Guidelines aim at providing practical guidance to those employers that, pursuant to the new law, are now required to implement their own internal reporting channels. In particular, the Guidelines provide further indications on the implementation requirements and clarify basic principles that employer "can" take into account when setting up their whistleblowing policy, without prejudice for the possibility of further future clarifications by the Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority (i.e., the authority empowered to issue the relevant sanctions in case of non-compliance with Italian Whistleblowing legislation).
Specifically, the Guidelines provide more details on:
- The scope of application of the legislation, clarifying which individuals must be protected against retaliation, including whistleblowers and facilitators.
- The breaches may be reported pursuant to Italian law.
- The ways in which internal reporting channels must be set up and how reports can be submitted.
- The individuals entrusted with the management of said internal reporting channels.
- The information that must be provided to the potential reporters.
- The management of anonymous reports, that were not specifically regulated by Italian legislation implementing the EU Directive.
- The ways in which personal data must be processed and the relevant data privacy requirements provided under Italian law.
It is worth noting that the new Guidelines do not provide clarifications on multinational groups or the possibility of having both "global" reporting channels and local ones.
The Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority, however, reiterates that Italian law allows only "medium-small size" companies (i.e., employing up to 249 employees) to use whistleblowing and reporting channels of other medium-small size group companies through specific agreements, provided in any case the need for reports to be managed at company level.
Do not hesitate to contact our team for any clarification!