The fight against money laundering is a truly infinite one
as institutions are forced to play catch-up with ever more creative ways to
legitimise the proceeds of crime.
Financial institutions, online gaming operations and merchants, both
online and offline, handling high-value transactions are but the front line in
identifying and stemming the flow of illicit funds.
The complex challenges posed by the identification of fraud and criminal
activity, as well as the oft huge sums involved affect huge institutions and
smaller outfits alike.A case in point
are the two cases involving the Citigroup owned Banco Nacional de Mexico, with
a $400 million fraud uncovered in 2014 and the 2015 levying of a $140 million
fine against Banamex USA, the smaller California and Texas based subsidiary for
a systemic failure to enact a qualified and knowledgeable hierarchy to detect
and report illegal or suspicious activity.
In the former case, the blame was laid squarely on the bank’s employees and
executives, with a number directly involved in aiding and abetting the
procurement of a loan that could have not been repaid, by processing falsified
documentation, whereas others had simply not acted or taken any measures to
prevent the situation.
In the Banamex USA case however, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and
California’s Dept of Business Oversight found that the bank simply did not have
the correct structure or knowledge to monitor transactions and client accounts,
leading to the aforementioned fine and ultimately to the closure of operations.
These are, sadly, far from isolated cases and numerous parallels can be drawn
with other cases involving banks of all sizes over the past few years,
including the multi-billion dollar fines for breaches of AML regulations levied
onto HSBC and BNP Paribas in 2012 and 2014..
If banks, expected to be the leading experts in account and transaction
handling are far from immune of cases of oversight, structural deficiencies and
internal collusion, how can smaller operations, and non-strictly financial ones,
as are gambling operations, as highlighted by the EU’s 4th AML
directive be expected to comply with the risk-based legislative requirements,
all the while managing their exposure by June 2017?
The brains behind crime and fraud are a far cry from the image we have
inherited of the thugs behind the Prohibition-era Chicago launderettes that
give rise to the term, and are deploying technology and financial wizardry in
ever-increasing levels of complexity in an attempt to circumvent and elude
controls and reporting.
In a case of fighting fire with fire, KYC Portal is a fully fledged
solution that handles customers prior to on-boarding, with full due diligence
checks and monitors, independently of jurisdiction or industry of operations,
with seamless integration with any number of third party screening services,
existing customer management platforms and internal databases.
Additionally, via the in-built transaction monitoring and analysis module,
KYC Portal allows for the real-time identification of individually anomalous or
suspicious transactions, where these differ from the assigned pattern for the
individual customer account, customer type profile or expected volume and
frequency based on predetermined ranges.
Running in the background, the KYCP transaction monitor links seamlessly with
the operator’s data warehouses and queries and assesses all volumes round the
clock, notifying when thresholds are triggered.
Already proven to be invaluable within nation-wide bank use case scenarios, the
infinitely scalable nature of KYC Portal translates into the first effective
monitoring and prevention tool that is within the economically feasible and
operationally intuitive reach of operators of all sizes and scope, including
those without a dedicated technology department backing up the finance