In the work that we produce for our clients and the way we work with others, we strive to meet high ethical standards. Data security and privacy have become important issues for the communications services sector and we aim to be at the forefront of emerging good practice.

Fast Read

  • Over 120,000 employees completed our Ethics and Anti-Bribery and Corruption training.
  • Global Data Health Checker used to assess privacy standards across all WPP companies.
  • Data Code of Conduct launched and global IT security, privacy and social media policies rolled out across the Group.
  • 63% of companies have a dedicated privacy lead and have introduced bespoke privacy training.
Man and woman

employees completed ethics and anti-corruption training

We set great store by maintaining high standards of integrity and honesty. Our agencies take special care in marketing to children, and when producing work for products or sectors that are potentially sensitive. We do not condone ‘greenwashing’ of a client’s or product’s environmental performance.

Management approach

The WPP Code of Conduct and Group Sustainability Policy help our people in dealing with a wide range of ethical, social and environmental subjects. They apply to all employees in all locations and are available on our website and intranet. Both are regularly updated.

These policies are implemented by our companies at a local level, with mandatory ethics and anti-bribery and corruption training for all employees. All WPP companies handle data that relates to their business, employees, clients and, in some cases, consumers. WPP is increasing its focus on how this data is collected, used and stored. All companies must comply with WPP data and security policies, and WPP’s Data Code of Conduct. Our IT security (ITS) audit team monitors compliance.

We have a compliance officer to oversee our approach to ethics and compliance, and to provide support and guidance to our companies. She reports to our Group chief counsel and director of Internal Audit. Companies implement additional policies and procedures as needed, depending on their business area.

Attitudes to subjects such as taste and decency evolve, and new issues can arise as technology develops. Our companies participate in industry groups and help to develop and evolve codes of practice for the marketing industry. We expect our companies to comply with all relevant legal requirements and codes of practice for marketing standards in the work they produce for clients. We monitor any upheld complaints against campaigns by our companies.

Chapter 3 of 10