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7 ways electronic AML checks can reduce your risk

6th October 2016

Is your agency doing enough to check the risk posed by money laundering to your business? How often are we guilty of taking a copy of a passport and/or utility bill and simply filing them away? Are you checking the legitimacy of the documentation? What do they actually tell you? Does your client pose a risk to the business from a money laundering perspective? Are they on government sanctions lists or are they a Politically Exposed Person?

These are all questions you should be asking yourself as a business; they are certainly the questions HMRC will be asking when they undertake their investigations.

Fraudsters are clever; they are successful because they can navigate the flaws in even the most robust AML systems. There is a recognition of this in the regulations when they talk about taking all “reasonable” steps to deal with the risks. However… no illegal funds need to have passed through your business in order for you to be culpable.

Ensure your business is taking all “reasonable” steps to identify the risk posed by money laundering to your business. We have long advocated electronic checks which have the following benefits over traditional paper based checks:

  • Checks more databases than traditional checks so you can be more confident of the result
  • Interprets the result to provide you with a Pass or Refer
  • Results take 30 seconds to come through
  • Identifies persons on government sanctions lists and Politically Exposed Persons (including UK PEPs, now a requirement under the 4th Money Laundering Directive)
  • Enables you to deal with both clients you meet face-to-face and remote clients and deal with the issue by undertaking Normal and High Risk checks
  • Enables you to take a consistent approach to AML risk across your business
  • Records all your checks for the requisite 5 years

For more information contact Samantha Peacock (speacock@etsos.co.uk) on 01524 220013.

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