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Financial institutions need to improve their AML compliance

Nurdianah Md Nur | June 20, 2014
Firms need to take an enterprise-wide approach to integrate AML functions to establish a culture of compliance, said Joe Friscia of NICE Actimize.

More than half (52 percent) of the professionals in financial institutions globally believe that their companies lack a strong culture of compliance. However, 29 percent of the respondents  expect the situation to change due to the increasing anti-money-laundering regulatory enforcement activities and stiffer penalties and fines today. 

These were part of the findings from the 'Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Culture of Compliance' poll conducted by NICE Actimize - a provider of financial crime, risk and compliance software platform - during a webinar. The poll took into consideration the opinions of 422 compliance professionals representing more than 300 financial service firms around the world. 

When asked about their pressing AML concerns for the next six to 12 months, respondents cited identifying gaps in their overall AML strategy (47 percent), as well as model risk governance and model risk management requirements (23 percent). 

Additionally, 12 percent of the respondents said that being held personally responsible for non-compliant activities was something they will be thinking about over the coming year. This is in line with the regulators' move to look for "accountability at both institutional and compliance officer levels," said Joe Friscia, president of NICE Actimize.

To establish a culture of compliance, Friscia advised financial institutions to take an enterprise-wide approach to integrating AML functions. "Integrating processes such as customer risk assessment and sanctions screening efforts with transaction monitoring delivers a broader view of AML risk to a firm and enables greater ability to action against it," he said.


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