FIN.

Category - Financial Crime Prevention

FATF updates recommendations

FATF has updated its recommendations in respect of: Recommendation 1 and its interpretative note, to broaden the existing requirement specifically to require relevant entities to identify and assess the risks of...

MLR Bank Account Portal not yet ready

FCA has confirmed that the Bank Account Portal, which is being set up under the MLRs to enable credit institutions and providers of safe custody services to respond to requests for information from a law enforcement...

FCA: new webpages on whistleblowing

The FCA has launched two new webpages on whistleblowing. The first webpage sets out the process for reporting concerns of wrongdoing to the FCA in confidence and provides guidance on: Making the decision to speak to the...

Commission publishes EU work programme 2021

The European Commission has announced its focus for 2021.  As well as continuing to work on managing the effects of the pandemic, its priorities will include: a “Fit for 55” packages to reduce emissions by...

FSB issues final report on CIRR toolkit

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published its final report on a toolkit of effective practices for financial institutions’ cyber incident response and recovery (CIRR). The toolkit aims to assist financial...

HMRC publishes MLR risk assessment guidance

HMRC has published risk assessment information to help businesses carry out the money laundering and terrorist financing risk assessment required under the MLRs.  There are separate documents for each of: money services...

FSB reports on global stablecoins

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published its finalised high-level recommendations for the regulation, supervision and oversight of “global stablecoin” (GSC) arrangements. The report says that GSC...

SFO looks to future challenges

Lisa Osofsky has spoken on future challenges in economic crime.  She focused on: the success of the National Economic Crime Centre in its first 2 years of existence; the refreshed Economic Crime Plan; better engagement...

OFSI publishes annual review

OFSI has published its annual review for the year to March 2020. The review highlights: OFSI’s work to prepare for the end of the transition period; its work on reported breaches and how it decides on the...

FCA opens 2 sandbox windows

FCA has opened two new application windows in its Sandbox – applications for Cohort 7 of the now established regulatory sandbox, and the pilot of a new Digital Sandbox. The emphasis is on firms providing products...

FGC updated for MLR changes

The Financial Crime Guide has been updated to reflect necessary changes consequent on implementation of MLD5. In particular, it now covers new high-risk factor considerations; changed e-money thresholds for CDD; updated...

OFSI publishes quarterly TAFA report

OFSI has published its quarterly report on the operation of TAFA, covering the quarter to end March 2020. At the end of the quarter, just over £100,000 were frozen, but mainly relating to the EU Al-Qaida Regulation...

EU updates on AML initiatives

Valdis Dombrovskis has spoken on financial crime prevention and, in particular on the AML action plan. He is pleased at the support the plan received, and the overwhelming agreement that no action is not an option. They...

FCA reports on regulatory perimeter

FCA has published its second report on the regulatory perimeter. The report looks at: consumer confusion about the perimeter – and when FCA has the power to act. It also notes that customers may be confused as to...

EU proposes crypto-asset market Regulation

The EU has published a proposal for a Regulation on markets in crypto-assets, as part of its Digital Finance package.  The proposal notes many Member States have legislated on issues relating to crypto-assets which has...

FCA and PSR publish annual reports

FCA has published its annual report and accounts for 2019/20. The report notes FCa’s key achievements for the year.  Apart from the obvious measures to address the problems caused by Covid-19, it highlights:...

EBA calls for single AML rulebook

EBA has published its response to the European Commission’s call for advice on how to strengthen the AML/CFT legal framework. It feels the only way to tackle vulnerabilities that come from divergent practices...

FCA censures individual for market abuse

FCA has publicly censured the former CEO of Worldspreads and banned him from any roles linked to regulated activity, as as result of market abuse.  It originally fined Conor Foley around £650,000 but imposed a public...

SFO updates on enforcement activities

Lisa Osofsky has spoken on SFO’s most recent enforcement activity and its priorities for the future. She spoke about how SFO has worked on its priorities of better cooperation, use of technology, intelligence...

FMLC responds on AML action plan

FMLC has responded to the Commission’s consultation on its AML action plan.  The response focuses on: the scope of EU AML legislation on virtual currencies, and how it might be helpful to broaden the definition;...

HMRC publishes list of MLR miscreants

HMRC has published its list of businesses who, over the past tax year, have not complied with their obligations under the MLRs. Over the period, there were 15 “major” penalties, including a fine of nearly...

Wolfsberg updates on effective AML programmes

The Wolfsberg Group has published a statement on steps financial institutions can take to evolve their AML./CTF regimes to meet the key elements of the Wolfsberg effective programme. It outlines the key steps as: assess...

Wolfsberg Group publishes SOW and SOF FAQs

The Wolfsberg Group has published FAQs on how Financial Institutions can identify, mitigate and manage money laundering risks by undertaking Source of Wealth and Source of Funds checks on relevant customers, when...

Up next from FCA

FCA’s latest Policy Development Update heralds: consultation on financial crime reporting during Q3; PS on debt advice levy rates in Q4; CP on exit fees in investment platforms and comparable firms during 2021; PS...

PSR focuses on APP scams

The PSR has stressed the importance of the CRM Code in reimbursing victims of APP scams.  It notes the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way many people make payments, and left many of them vulnerable to fraud. The Code...

Treasury consults on economic crime levy

Treasury is consulting on the introduction of the economic crime levy, announced in the Budget, which aims to raise around £100m per year. It wants views on: the design principles of the levy how it can operate in...

HMRC feeds back on trust registration

HMRC has published a summary of the responses it received to its consultation on MLD5 and the Trust Registration Service.  The consultation had over 100 responses, and the key messages were: most respondents agreed with...

MEPs approve ML action plan

MEPs have resoundingly backed the Commission’s action plan for fighting money laundering and terrorist financing. In a press release, the European Parliament said it “deplores” the incorrect and patchy...

Commission confirms MLD4 enforcement actions

The European Commission has confirmed further actions against Member States for failure correctly to transpose MLD4. It has sent letters of formal notice to Luxembourg, Slovakia and Slovenia, reasoned opinions to...

Up next from FCA

Over the rest of 2020, FCA plans the following: consultations on mortgage borrowing and mortgage prisoners (now overdue), debt advice levy rates and exist fees in investment platforms (Summer 2020) and on financial...

Basel Committee finalises AML/CFT guidelines

The Basel Committee has published the updated version of its guidelines for supervisors on co-operation in relation to the sound management of risks related to money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Among the...

Court of Appeal upholds Cynergy judgement

The Court of Appeal has upheld the judgment that a borrower was justified in its refusal to make payments under a loan where the ultimate beneficial owner of the lender was an OFAC SDN. Cynergy Bank (a UK bank) had...

FCA makes new rules

FCA has published a Handbook Notice covering the rules it made at its May and June Board meetings. changes to COBs in relation to pension transfers, introducing a ban on contingent charging in respect of most advice on...

MLD4 high-risk list in OJEU

The revised list of high-risk third countries for AML purposes has been published in the OJEU. The new list applies from 1 October, and will comprise: Afghanistan Bahamas Barbados Botswana Cambodia Ghana Iraq Jamaica...

FCA reminds crypto businesses to register

FCA has reminded businesses that carry on cryptoasset activity in the UK to register with it for AML purposes, if they have not done so already.  Firms that were carrying on the activities before 10 January 2020 must...

JMLSG upates on Covid-19 risks

JMLSG has reminded firms of FCA’s guidance on managing financial crime risks throughout Covid-19 and has also commented on the disruption the pandemic is causing to documents often relied on for CDD purposes. It...

FCA fines Commerzbank for AML failings

FCA has fined Commerzbank AG London Branch nearly £38m for AML systems and controls failings spanning a 5 year period to September 2017.  The bank benefited from a 30% discount for early settlement. Many of the...

EBA looks to understand derisking

The EBA has issued a call for input better to understand the scale and drivers of derisking and its impact on customers.  It wants to gain better insight into why finacnail institutions prefer to derisk instead of...

FCA updates market abuse pages

FCA has updated the guidance on its website on reporting suspected market abuse. The guidance includes FCA’s expectations in respect of how firms should make market observations in situations where they will not...

Pay.UK heralds COP launch

Pay.UK has heralded the introduction of Confirmation of Payee and has reminded users of the importance of using “first name surname” rather than a nickname on payment details. Its data shows that 34% of...

Europol launches economic crime centre

Europol has launched the European Financial and Economic Crime Centre to give better operational support to Member States and EU bodies fighting financial and economic crime. It has also published a report looking at...

FCA publishes quarterly CP

FCA is returning to some regular business and has published a short quarterly consultation, proposing changes to: clarify FSCS’s power to declare in default firms and successors subject to the proposed new...

EVENT: Retail Banking Mixer Webinar

Our next r=Retail Banking Mixer will be held by webinar on 18th June at 10am.  We are delighted to be joined by Rosemary Ford and Amber Andrade from Deloitte this time. The webinar continues the focus on COVID-19.  Our...

Commission updates on MLD transposition

The European Commission has updated its website to show the state of transposition and infringement actions in respect of the Money Laundering Directives.  The UK is no longer mentioned. In respect of MLD4, all Member...

JMLSG updates guidance

JMLSG has published its final amendments to its guidance to take account of the implementation of MLD5, and which it consulted on in February.  It has submitted the changes to Treasury for approval.

OFSI reports on TAFA

OFSI has submitted its latest quarterly report to Parliament on the operation of the UK asset freezing regime under TAFA. The report covers the quarter to the end of 2019 and notes: only £9,000 of funds were frozen...

Market Watch Covid special

FCA’s latest edition of Market Watch looks at market conduct and discipline in the context of coronavirus. It stresses particularly the importance of complying with the standards of MAR. Given the likely need for...

EP updates on MLD4 high-risk list

The European Parliament’s legislative observatory notes that the revised MLD4 high-risk third country list is now awaiting a committee decision.  Meanwhile, the UK is among 9 jurisdictions from whom the Commission...

JMLSG consults on pooled client accounts

JMLSG is consulting on some new draft text for Chapter 5 of Part 1 of its guidance dealing with pooled client accounts. JMLSG considers the key risks of PCAs are where a customer’s clients misuse a PCA without the...

FCA updates on Innovation Hub help

FCA has updated its information on requesting Innovation Hub support in light of Covid-19. It wants to hear from firms who have creative and innovative solutions to the challenges the virus is posing, and is...

NCA updates guidance on better SARs

NCA has published an update to its guidance on how to submit better quality SARs, and a set of FAQs to accompany it.  The guidance stresses that a properly made SAR will give the enforcement agencies a quick picture of...

EU launches AML policy

The European Commission has adopted an action plan for an EU policy on preventing money laundering and terrorist financing. It wants to deliver, by early 2021: effective implementation of existing rules a single EU...

FATF updates on Covid-19 risks

FATF has considered the financial crime risks that Covid-19 has created, and is looking at how to address them. It is particularly concerned at, for example, how criminals may seek to bypass CDD measures, use online...

FCA publishes skilled person data

FCA has publicised the number of skilled persons reports commissioned in January to March 2020. It commissioned 24 in total, of which 9 related to retail banking and 6 to retail lending.  6 of the reports were on...

Regulator Covid-19 Update 27 April

On 27 April: FCA has clarified the relationship between its rules and the UK’s CBILS and Bounce Back Loan schemes.  It notes that, pending the roll-out of the BBL scheme, which, from 4 May,  will give small...

Wolfsberg Group updates CBDDQ

The Wolfsberg Group has updated its Correspondent Banking DDQ and supporting documents. The changes update the documents and focus on ease of use and readability.

TI disappointed at UWO overturning

Transparency International has expressed its disappointment at the High Court’s decision to dismiss UWOs that would have required family members of the former Kazakh President to explain how they acquired £80m of...

PSR publishes APP scam thoughts

The PSR has published a summary of a conference call between key players in the payments industry to discuss the progress being made in tackling APP scams. It decided to go ahead with the call, not least as Covid-19 has...

FCA Business Plan 20/21

The FCA published its business plan for the coming year this morning.  The plan focuses around 5 key priorities for the year.  It has been significantly reshaped because of coronavirus as it was intended to show the...

Regulator Covid-19 update 1 April

Further updates from the regulators, in addition to FCA’s Dear CEO letter to retail investment firms, include: PRA welcoming the agreement by the boards of large UK banks to suspend dividends and buybacks on...

JMLSG consults on crypto guidance

JMLSG is consulting on a new part to its sectoral guidance, to cover cryptoasset exchange providers and custodian wallet providers. The new Part 22: defines crypto-assets, noting some examples which firms should...

Gambling Commission fines for AML failings

The Gambling Commission has fined Betway £11,6m for a series of “social responsibility” and money laundering failings linked to 7 VIP customers. The Gambling Commission found that: generally, because the...

TI welcomes economic crime levy

Transparency International has welcomed the Government’s announcement of an economic crime levy on firms subject to the MLRs. The Government will consult on its plans later in the spring.

FCA compares bank fraud controls

FCA has published data on the fraud controls banks have in place, intended to help consumers compare what different banks do. UK Finance asked banks: what their approach to fraud prevention was; what controls the firm...

FATF publishes guidance on digital ID

FATF has published a report giving guidance to regulators and firms on how to determine whether a digital ID is an appropriate CDD tool.  The report looks at how digital ID systems work, and what their key features are...

FCA speaks on digital assets

Therese Chambers has spoken on the financial crime risks presented by stablecoins and other digital assets. She spoke of: early attempts to launch non-state backed digital currency, and Bitcoin’s predecessors...

Up next from FCA

FCA plans the following publications: consultation on exit fees in investment platforms and comparable firms (March); consultation on listing of OEICs (Q1); consultation on changes to DEPP, EG and the financial crime...

FCA publishes 2019 data on STORs

The FCA has published its suspicious transaction and order reports (STORs) figures for the year ending December 2019. The number of STORs had increased consistently since 2016; however, the data for 2019 appears to buck...

CLLS views on TRS extension

CLLS has input its view on the extension to the TRS. As with other respondents, it notes several types of trust it thinks should be out of scope, including: trust arrangements that are incidental to a corporate...

APP Scams Interim Funding Extension

UK Finance confirmed on 27 February  that the payment service providers who have provided the interim funding arrangement  since May last year, have agreed to extend their funding to the end of the year (31/12/20). This...

Treasury updates AML advisory

Treasury has updated its AML advisory in the light of the most recent FATF plenary.  The notice confirms that counter measures and enhanced due diligence should be applied in respect of North Korea and Iran, and...