Despite the Securities and Exchange Commission's focus upon regulating the securities industry and protecting investors, the agency is moving to play a bigger role in cybersecurity. Because the SEC is responsible for customer data protection, disclosure of material information, and market system integrity, it tends to handle cybersecurity issues for advisers, broker dealers, and public companies.
The Best Way to really "Know Your Customer"
If you are involved in bank operations management, then you already know that your bank is required to authenticate customer ID documents. Still many banks don’t do this well, and are exposed to compliance-related fines.
What if … You could enhance compliance and position your bank to attract new customers?
Bank Secrecy Act compliance is more important than ever to companies that deal with “covered transactions”. The cost of fraud has exceeded one trillion dollars and is on the rise. The Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) was put in place to assist government agencies with stopping money laundering.
There are three main requirements that the BSA insists of financial institutions to maintain Bank Secrecy Act compliance:
- 1. Keep records for cash purchases of negotiable instruments
- 2. File reports of these purchases
- 3. Report any activity that may be indicative of tax evasion, money laundering or other illegal activities
To deter or prevent illegal activity including terrorism and money laundering, Bank Secrecy Act compliance requires verification of a client's or customer's identity (see prior post: BSA/CIP Client Identification and Verification Requirements) and the reporting of large cash transactions. This post will focus on the $10,000 Rule for reporting cash transactions.
If you have followed the news at all lately, you have likely heard that financial institutions of all stripes are coming under greater scrutiny, with proposals for ever-tighter regulation still on the horizon. This includes not only bank lending and deposit activities, but also the manner in which all institutions vet their clients - former, current and future. In large part this is an attempt to mitigate identity theft. Creative identity thieves have been able to steal personal identification information from thousands of accounts. Creating false identities and fake ID Documents to open new lines of credit has become easier than ever.
It is perhaps a sign of the times when the annual convention of anti-money laundering professionals draws a record attendance. This year, the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS) met for the 10th year straight, covering financial fraud from both a global and a organization-focused perspective, and celebrating both a record turnout for the convention and a new high in membership.
Scenario: A financial institution is opening a new branch, and is starting a major local PR blitz for new customer acquisition. Great incentives are being offered for new account holders, and a large response is anticipated. How does the bank process a flurry of new applications, yet conduct thorough “trust” identification verifications in a timely manner to prevent identity theft?
The last several weeks have seen a number of noteworthy arrests for money laundering. A fugitive American, who pled guilty to money laundering charges eight years ago but disappeared while out on bail, was finally returned to the U.S. after being apprehended in Mexico last year. And a Jamaican national was sentenced to 30 years in prison in the U.S. for money laundering, and ordered to pay $55 million in restitution to his victims – after he finishes out his 6 ½ year term for a prior conviction in Jamaica.