Phonexia Whistleblowing Policy
This policy informs you of the options available to you when reporting suspected illegal activity, which relates to Phonexia operations. This policy contains information about the types of suspicions that should be reported, the rights of reporting persons, procedures for investigating reports and the notifying of reporting persons of the outcomes of such investigations.
The term “whistleblowing” is used to describe a disclosure by an employee or another person of suspected wrongdoing within an organization. It is essential that reporting persons, or whistleblowers, feel safe and report their suspicions in early stages of the suspect activity.
Phonexia supports its employees and other persons in reporting matters that are deemed to contravene the rules and/or values upheld by Phonexia. By implementing its Ethics Line, Phonexia makes available various reporting channels that ensure the protection of the reporting person’s identity. Where the identity of the reporting person is known, it is never disclosed without the explicit consent of the reporting person. Similarly, no other information is disclosed that could be used to infer a reporting person’s identity (unless required by law).
Timely reporting of suspected wrongdoings is beneficial as it facilitates the speedy investigation of the reported matter and reduces the chances of any negative impacts.
2. Who can file a report?
Reports may be filed by natural persons who have become aware of an illegal activity in connection with their work or similar activity performed for Phonexia. Such persons include:
- Phonexia employees (including former employees) and applicants for jobs with Phonexia,
- employees on temporary work assignments in Phonexia (“agency workers”),
- volunteers or interns working in Phonexia,
- sole traders acting as suppliers to Phonexia or bidding for a supply order from Phonexia,
- employees or other natural persons working under the supervision of Phonexia suppliers,
- shareholders and/or members of statutory bodies of Phonexia companies.
Persons whose legal relationship with Phonexia is yet to commence shall be subject to this policy only to the extent to which the reported information was obtained as part of pre-relationship negotiations, e.g. during the recruitment and selection of potential employees.
3. What should be reported?
You can use the Ethics Line to report suspicions of the following types of wrongdoing:
- criminal offence (including theft and fraud) or misdemeanour,
- violations of Phonexia principles and/or procedures,
- bullying, harassment, discrimination or substance abuse,
- violations of rules pertaining to the protection of privacy and personal data, and the security of network and information systems,
- threats to health and/or safety or persons,
- damage to the environment,
- violations of other statutory obligations,
- attempts to suppress or conceal information regarding any of the above.
This policy is not concerned with complaints related to employment and/or relationships in the workplace. Solutions to work-related matters or any other issues not covered by this policy should be sought from the Employee Care department (“EC”). Any matters related to occupational health and safety should be reported in accordance with procedures defined in the internal regulations, unless the issue in question is serious and there exists a reasonable uncertainty about the advisability of reporting it through the standard channels. This policy also does not apply to any service-related complaints or complaints about unsatisfactory quality.
You must have reasonable grounds for believing that the matter to be reported is concerned with one or more of the areas covered by this policy. It is possible to report past, current or likely future matters. There is no requirement for definitive supporting evidence to be included with the report. Disclosures need only be made in good faith given the circumstances at the time of the disclosure.
If you have any doubts as to whether a suspicion should be reported, it is advisable to discuss the matter with a team leader or another person in a managing position who can be trusted and is not involved in the matter in any way. It is important not to share any information about possible suspicions with anyone involved in the matter or any third party other than the person from whom confidential advice is sought.
If a reported matter falls outside the scope of whistleblower protection legislation you will be notified of the fact without undue delay.
4. Filing a report
We encourage you to report all relevant suspicions using the Ethics Line in the manner described below. This approach ensures a timely response and investigation.
The Ethics Line portal will best guide you through the reporting process. You can find the Ethics Line on our web site https://www.phonexia.com/ and on this link: https://ethicshotline.eu/cs/home/?client=27680258
The acceptance, administration and impartial investigation of reports is conducted for us by employees of BDO Audit s.r.o., with its registered offices at V parku 2316/12, Chodov, post code 148 00, Prague 4, reg. No.: 45314381 (“BDO”). They have been authorised by Phonexia to act as “competent persons” as per whistleblower protection legislation. Additional information is available on the Ethics Line portal.
When filing a report using the Ethics Line, you will be asked to specify in particular the following:
- Your relationship to Phonexia (employee, supplier, etc.),
- description of the matter you want to report including specification of time and place of occurrence,
- names of persons who may have witnessed the matter or may possess additional information related to the reported matter (any of the named persons may be contacted during the investigation stage),
- any other information and evidence that may be of use in the investigation of your report.
You can also provide your name and contact information. Such information may speed up the investigation considerably, but it is voluntary. If you choose to make a report other than through the Ethics Line portal, please provide us with at least the above information.
You can also submit the report by telephone on the following number between 9:00 and 16:00.   not yet applicable
5. Right to protection of reporting persons
Phonexia ensures the protection of persons reporting their suspicions in good faith even if the suspicions subsequently prove to be unjustified. Reports made with the intention to provide knowingly false information and harm Phonexia do not enjoy such protections and may be penalised in compliance with whistleblower protection legislation.
You may decide to file your report anonymously. Where you share your identity, Phonexia will not disclose any personal information without your explicit consent to any person other than the competent persons authorised to investigate reports. The same applies to any other information from which your identity could be derived (unless required by law, such as in connection with investigation by law enforcement authorities or as part of judicial proceedings).
6. Protection of persons affected by report
Persons affected by the investigation of a report are entitled to fair treatment during the course of the investigation. This includes the unbiased and objective assessment of relevant facts, the prohibition of discrimination and the protection of personal data as stipulated by applicable legal regulations.
7. Process of report evaluation
The receipt of a report will be confirmed by BDO within seven days. BDO also notifies designated persons within Phonexia about the receipt of a report, together with information regarding the nature of the report.
Next, BDO evaluates whether a breach was committed as specified by whistleblower protection legislation and/or associated national legislation for the purposes of the subsequent confirming or disproving of the reported suspicion.
BDO is not authorised to share any specific information with you regarding the course of the investigation. Where possible, you will be informed as to whether the report is to be investigated or is subject to an ongoing or concluded investigation.
BDO may use a system of confidential communication with you to obtain additional information as necessary. BDO may also request a meeting with you as an opportunity for the latter to explain your suspicions in detail and provide any available evidence. You are not obliged to agree to such a meeting.
BDO may also request cooperation from any person to whom the report is related and/or other Phonexia employees who may assist in the investigation. Any information so obtained remains confidential. Any notes created will form part of the file maintained by competent persons during the investigation.
Information regarding received reports will be retained for at least five years from the date of receipt.
If you feel at any point during the investigation that you are the subject of retaliatory measures as a result of your report, you must notify BDO of the fact at their earliest opportunity. Any such claim will be reviewed as part of the investigation and any person found to have participated in any retaliatory measures will be treated in compliance with applicable labour law provisions.
8. Conclusion of report evaluation
Based on the information acquired, BDO determines whether an evaluated report is justified. The conclusions of the evaluation will be described and included in the file. Anonymised conclusions will be submitted to designated persons within Phonexia along with any recommendations for the rectification of identified shortcomings and/or mitigation of identified risks.
You as a reporting person will be notified of the conclusion regarding the justification of your report within 30 days from the receipt of the report. This period may be extended in complicated cases by up to 30 days, no more than twice. You will be notified of any extension of the notification period.
Where measures are introduced as a result of the report evaluation with the aim of rectifying identified shortcomings or mitigating identified risks, BDO will inform you of the fact. Neither the measures introduced, nor the information provided may encroach and/or jeopardise any interest protected by law, including objectives of criminal proceedings, misdemeanour proceedings or any other proceedings regarding an activity that bears the characteristics of a misdemeanour.