Anti-money laundering (AML) is a set of laws, regulations, and proceedings that were made to prevent criminals, cyber attackers, and even businesses from disguising funds acquired using illegal methods as legal money.
Firstly, the illegal funds are covertly introduced into the legit financial system, then the money is moved around so the government and regulating bodies can’t keep a track of it. Money laundering can usually support crimes such as drugs, trafficking, and terrorism, it can even impact the global economy.
While the anti-money laundering act covers just a limited range of transactions, the impacts can be wide-ranging. The AML laws require banks, FinTechs, and financial institutions to follow all the rules to reduce the risks of money laundering. Let’s start with learning what AML is in banking so we can move on to how to prevent AML risk with DIRO.
How Anti Money Laundering Works?
AML laws are made to target illegal activities that revolve around manipulating the market, deal with illegal goods, tax evasion, and several other methods to hide the funds that are acquired using illegal methods.
Criminals tend to launder the money that they obtain through ventures like drug trafficking, etc. so the money can’t be traced back to them. One of the most common methods of hiding the money from governments and other regulatory bodies is by moving the money around using legal cash-based businesses. These businesses are either owned by the criminals themselves or they are run by their supporters. These businesses that seem legal upfront then deposit the illegal money which can later be used by criminals for terrorism, destabilizing the global economy, and more.
Another common way money launderers hide their money is by depositing cash into foreign countries in small amounts as not to arouse suspicion or use the cash to buy assets that can later be converted into cash. A lot of money launderers will invest their money using methods that can provide them with high returns in a limited time.
One of the major factors of AML regulation is the “holding period”. According to this rule, the deposits made into an account are to remain there for at least 5 trading days. This holding period is set in place to reduce money laundering and mitigate financial risks. How anti-money laundering works is by building a set of rules and regulations that are to be followed by banks and other financial entities.
Reporting Suspicious Activity
It is the duty of financial institutions and banks to keep an eye on customer deposits and other transactions that seem suspicious and could be a part of money laundering activity. All financial institutions have to verify where large sums of money originated from, and report all the transactions that contain cash more than $10,000. If banks want to comply with AML regulations, they must make sure that all their clients are aware of the rules.
If a specific person or organization is under money laundering investigation by regulatory bodies, they will look for inconsistencies or activities that look suspicious in all the financial records. With the financial industry becoming tougher to survive in, extensive records are kept and managed for each and every financial transaction. During the investigation, when law enforcements try to trace a crime, they use specific methods that are better than others to find the origin of funds.
If the law is investigating robbery, embezzlement, or larceny, they often can send money back to the victims. Let’s say that a federal agency uncovers a money laundering crime, the agency has the means to trace it back to those from whom the money was taken.
The Difference Between AML and KYC
The difference between AML and KYC is quite simple to grasp. While both the compliances are closely related to each other, they have some minimal differences. In banking, KYC rules are the rules that organizations have to follow to identify customer identities.
AML has a much wider application, it is the measures institutions follow to tackle and prevent money laundering, terrorism financing and reduce other financial crimes. Banks follow KYC and AML compliance to make sure their crimes face minimum risks.
History of Anti-Money Laundering
Anti-money laundering became prominent in global financial operations in 1989, it came into existence when countries from all over the globe joined forces and built the “Financial Action Task Force”. The primary objective of this international force is to develop strategies that can be used to fight money laundering and promote the implementation of these strategies globally. After the 9/11 terrorist attack, the FTFA expanded its efforts to diminish or completely stop terrorist financing.
Another organization that builds upon AML compliance and works tirelessly to fight against money laundering is the International Monetary Fund (IMF), just like FTAF, the IMF has the support of 189 countries to fight money laundering and fight terrorist funding.
How to Control AML Risk With DIRO?
DIRO’s award-winning document verification technology is the ideal solution for smoothening and streamlining KYC and AML compliance. We have worked tirelessly to develop a technology that can verify any document from any third-party web source globally.
Banks, financial institutions, and FinTechs can make use of DIRO’s document verification technology to mitigate the risk of money laundering & other financial crimes by verifying account holder information and bank statements in mere minutes.
Employing DIRO’s innovative technological solution, financial organizations can cut costs by reducing manual document verification. It can also help in improving the customer onboarding experience by reducing the friction of AML and KYC compliances. Having DIRO’s document verification technology, financial organizations can make a huge impact on KYC & AML compliance.