Financial Crime UK – Atos Victims Group http://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/ Thu, 23 Jun 2022 23:01:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/default1.png Financial Crime UK – Atos Victims Group http://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/ 32 32 Sharp rise in energy scams as household bills soar in Britain https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/sharp-rise-in-energy-scams-as-household-bills-soar-in-britain/ Thu, 23 Jun 2022 23:01:14 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/sharp-rise-in-energy-scams-as-household-bills-soar-in-britain/ Fraudsters are using the cost of living crisis to expand their scams, with a surge in energy schemes that exploit Britons’ desire to save money on electricity and gas bills, according to analysis of official data. Cons mentioning the names of the UK’s biggest energy companies rose 10% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2022, […]]]>

Fraudsters are using the cost of living crisis to expand their scams, with a surge in energy schemes that exploit Britons’ desire to save money on electricity and gas bills, according to analysis of official data.

Cons mentioning the names of the UK’s biggest energy companies rose 10% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2022, consumer group Which? said in its assessment of the Action Fraud figures.

In January, the annual jump was 27%. As energy bills soar, which ones? said the true figure was likely higher, noting that many scam attempts go unreported.

Scammers target consumers with “phishing” attempts designed to harvest their personal information, including bank details, which can then be used to carry out more sophisticated frauds.

UK Finance, the banking trade body, said data breaches and phishing attempts contributed to £784 million in bank fraud losses in 2020, the latest year for which data is available.

One of the most common methods Which? saw are emails from scammers posing as energy suppliers asking customers to request a refund due to a “calculation error” on their energy bill.

The emails look like real communications from energy providers because the scammers “spoof” the display name of the email so that it appears to come from an official address. To benefit from the discount, customers are asked to click on a link and enter their bank details.

Other phishing scams in circulation relate to the government’s £15billion energy aid package.

Earlier this month, Ofgem wrote to all energy suppliers urging them to warn customers about fake texts and WhatsApp messages claiming to be from the energy regulator.

The fake messages said: ‘You are eligible for the government funded £400 energy rebate’, prompting customers to click on a fake link to ‘complete your application’. In fact, this discount will be automatically applied to customer invoices from October.

Who? said the collapse of dozens of energy companies had created an atmosphere of confusion around unpaid bills, with scammers posing as debt collection companies in a bid to extort money from former customers.

The consumer group saw “sophisticated” emails received from customers, including their full names and knowledge of their former supplier, adding that they were particularly concerned that customer data could have been ” mishandled or stolen” when businesses close.

Action Fraud, the national fraud and cybercrime reporting center, also warned of a scam where criminals clone prepaid meter tokens and resell them at discounted prices. He warned that in reality, customers would end up paying twice for their energy consumption, once their legitimate supplier established what was happening.

“We advise all consumers to be wary of unsolicited emails, text messages or letters, especially those not addressed to you by name which may request sensitive information or ask you to make a bank transfer,” he said. said Jenny Ross, Which? money editor.

An easy way to verify the origin of emails claiming to be from an energy supplier is to click on the sender’s name to view the source email address. Consumers can then check their provider’s official domain name on the company’s official website. Who? also warns that consumers legitimate supplier will never ask for bank details because they have them on file.

“If in doubt, contact your energy provider directly using their website contact information,” Ross added.

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Revolut opens new office in Paris after big SocGen hire https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/revolut-opens-new-office-in-paris-after-big-socgen-hire/ Tue, 21 Jun 2022 12:56:22 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/revolut-opens-new-office-in-paris-after-big-socgen-hire/ After building its French team over the past 12 months, app-based bank Revolut has moved into a new Paris office. Revolut has been in France since 2017, but it closed its Paris office in 2020 during the pandemic. In 2021, the entire company switched to permanent flexible working. A spokesperson said the new Paris office, […]]]>

After building its French team over the past 12 months, app-based bank Revolut has moved into a new Paris office.

Revolut has been in France since 2017, but it closed its Paris office in 2020 during the pandemic. In 2021, the entire company switched to permanent flexible working. A spokesperson said the new Paris office, which is based in a WeWork with a view of Sacré-Coeur, is for colleagues who want to be flexible and come into the office occasionally while staying remote.

Revolut has hired 70 people for its French office over the past year, nearly doubling its size. Among them, Michel Bine, the former global head of FIC trading at SocGen. Bine left SocGen after 12 years in March 2020 and quietly joined Revolut as chief investment officer in April 2022. In May, Revolut also hired Franck Firat Koksel, a new France-based HR strategy manager at McKinsey & Co., as well as Baudouin de Fréminville. , an Oliver Wyman credit operations manager and financial crime analyst who worked for SocGen until September 2021.

Revolut is still recruiting in France. The bank currently has 19 open jobs that list working in French remotely as a possibility, including positions in business development, data, credit and compliance.

Revolut has a reputation for being a tough place to work. However, it also has a reputation for offering flexibility to employees, as long as they get the job done. Many of its French recruits work outside Paris, in cities like Lyon.

As less established fintechs struggle in the new funding environment, Revolut may seem like a safe option. The bank made cuts in Warsaw at the start of the pandemic, but continues to expand in 2022 after raising $800 million in funding from Softbank and Tiger Global (which are not doing well at the moment). last year. Bloomberg noted in Mary that Revolut has yet to obtain a banking license for the UK and this is delaying the licensing process in America. In Europe it is licensed through a subsidiary in Lithuania.

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French bank accused of handling ‘witch’s hat’ case https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/french-bank-accused-of-handling-witchs-hat-case/ Sun, 19 Jun 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/french-bank-accused-of-handling-witchs-hat-case/ BNP Paribas has been reprimanded by the city watchdog for its handling of complaints from a female banker who faced gender discrimination while working in its London office, it has revealed. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) held several meetings with senior officials from the French bank’s human resources department, having them explain how accusations of […]]]>

BNP Paribas has been reprimanded by the city watchdog for its handling of complaints from a female banker who faced gender discrimination while working in its London office, it has revealed.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) held several meetings with senior officials from the French bank’s human resources department, having them explain how accusations of unfair treatment and discrimination against Stacey Macken were dismissed, according to The Telegraph.

Ms Macken won a £2million payout earlier this year after judges ruled BNP unfairly discriminated against her because of her gender.

The banker, who worked in BNP’s prime brokerage division that deals with hedge funds, told an employment tribunal she had suffered years of bullying and was paid less than men in comparable roles.

The court heard drunken male colleagues placed a witch hat on Ms Macken’s desk, while senior staff also told her rude sex stories and shouted with the slogan ‘not now Stacey’.

Ms Macken has made repeated internal complaints about her treatment at BNP, including her salary and bonuses, which have been ignored.

In March 2019, the court ruled that BNP had subjected Ms Macken to “direct sexual discrimination and victimization”.

The heightened regulatory scrutiny of the case came as the FCA also carried out a ‘financial crime expert-led visit’ to the BNP in London on how it deals with its own whistleblowers.

The visit, which took place in December 2020, was disclosed in documents submitted to another labor court by a former BNP employee earlier this year.

The FCA ‘took action’ against the French lender in late 2020 following a review of BNP’s whistleblower processes after a handful of employees complained to the regulator, according to separate documents seen by The Telegraph.

It’s one of the first indications of tighter regulatory scrutiny of a bank’s systems and controls since the FCA fined former Barclays chief Jes Staley for his attempts to uncover a pitcher alert in 2018.

A spokesperson for the bank said: “Following the judgment almost three years ago, BNP Paribas has put in place a comprehensive remediation program and provided regular updates to our UK regulators.”

“As you’d expect, we have an open and cooperative relationship with our regulators and we have strong whistleblower policies and procedures to support our speak-up culture.”

The FCA declined to comment.

Earlier this year, the Telegraph revealed that a senior BNP lawyer had kept his job despite an investigation finding he had called an Asian colleague ‘Hu She’. The lawyer has since retired from the bank.

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British bride-to-be tried to rob store after crypto scam https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/british-bride-to-be-tried-to-rob-store-after-crypto-scam/ Fri, 17 Jun 2022 21:10:00 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/british-bride-to-be-tried-to-rob-store-after-crypto-scam/ A British groom was filmed being tackled as he attempted to rob a store – just moments after learning he had lost the money to pay for his wedding in a crypto scam, a court has heard . Charity worker Louis Crosby, 25, had ‘naively’ converted his savings into a bogus digital cash investment, the […]]]>

A British groom was filmed being tackled as he attempted to rob a store – just moments after learning he had lost the money to pay for his wedding in a crypto scam, a court has heard .

Charity worker Louis Crosby, 25, had ‘naively’ converted his savings into a bogus digital cash investment, the Sunderland Echo has claimed.

Less than an hour after discovering he had lost the lot in a scam, he grabbed an unloaded air pistol and attempted to rob a local bodega-style store, Newcastle Crown Court heard this week.

“Give me the money, I have a gun,” he reportedly warned.

Video footage showed him dressed in black, with a headscarf and sunglasses covering most of his face, as he slowly made his way to the counter last November.

Two male staff members ignored the threat, locking the money away, then walked over and tackled him. Footage showed Crosby desperately trying to get back outside the store, just for workers to keep grabbing him, eventually dragging him back inside for citizen’s arrest.

Louis Crosby allegedly attempted to rob the store with an unloaded air pistol an hour after learning he had lost his money in the scam.
Northern News and Pictures Ltd

During the scuffle, the store owner picked up a broken broomstick because he “feared for his life”, prosecutors reportedly told the hearing.

When the cops arrived, Cosby initially claimed it was “a joke”, the court was told.

However, the first offender eventually admitted to attempting to steal and possessing a firearm, the Echo said.

Louis Croby
Louis Crosby was filmed being tackled by the owners of the store.
Northern News and Pictures Ltd

He ‘didn’t have a clear idea’ at the time because he had lost the money he needed to marry a Singaporean woman he had met online, his lawyer, Nicholas Lane, told the court.

Ironically, the planned wedding had to be called off due to his arrest, the court heard. However, the engagement is still ongoing, the Echo said.

He escaped confinement, with his two-year prison sentence suspended for two years, meaning he doesn’t have to serve it behind bars if he stays out of harm’s way during that time.

Louis Croby
Louis Crosby won’t have to serve jail time if he stays out of trouble for two years.
Northern News and Pictures Ltd

Judge Julie Clemitson admitted that he was in a state of “mental disorder” when he committed “the impulsive act in response to losing all your savings”.

“You must have been in a state of crisis to act in such a desperate way, with thoughts oscillating between killing yourself and committing a financial crime to get yourself out of the situation,” Clemitson told her.

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Nigerian arrested in UK, extradited to Malta to face romance fraud charges https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/nigerian-arrested-in-uk-extradited-to-malta-to-face-romance-fraud-charges/ Thu, 16 Jun 2022 07:08:38 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/nigerian-arrested-in-uk-extradited-to-malta-to-face-romance-fraud-charges/ A 41-year-old Nigerian national, Johnson Anene has been remanded in custody after being brought to Malta to face fraud and money laundering charges. According to MaltaToday, Anene who lived in St Paul’s Bay before leaving for the UK, appeared in court on Wednesday after being arrested in Britain and transferred to Maltese authorities on a […]]]>

A 41-year-old Nigerian national, Johnson Anene has been remanded in custody after being brought to Malta to face fraud and money laundering charges.

According to MaltaToday, Anene who lived in St Paul’s Bay before leaving for the UK, appeared in court on Wednesday after being arrested in Britain and transferred to Maltese authorities on a European arrest warrant.



Anene, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, had been placed on the police wanted list in connection with the indictment last year of several other people accused of playing a role in a scam love online.

One of the defendants was former footballer Sunday Eboh.

According to the report, the elderly victim of the group had been tricked into sending money to someone claiming to be a lone US soldier deployed in Afghanistan. This case is still ongoing.

At Anene’s hearing, the court was told that ongoing investigations into the romance fraud scheme, conducted by the Paola District Police, in conjunction with the Financial Crimes Unit, had identified Anene.

Magistrate Rachel Montebello was told by prosecutors Abigail Caruana Vella, Sean Xerri de Caro and Karl Muscat, as well as detectives Claire Borg, Sarah Kathleen Zerafa, to issue an order freezing Anene’s assets.

The court was told by defense lawyer Rachel Tua that the extradition was uncontested and made a bail application, pointing to the defendant’s close family ties to Malta.

The request was opposed by the prosecution, who argued that the investigation revealed that Anene had fled Malta to escape prosecution for these crimes.

It was only recently that he was arrested in the UK under the European Arrest Warrant issued by Malta and transferred to the custody of the Maltese police.

In the meantime, the court did not uphold the bail request, ordering the man’s remand in custody.

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New Report Reveals FinTechs Are Increasingly Focused on Ethical and Sustainable Growth https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/new-report-reveals-fintechs-are-increasingly-focused-on-ethical-and-sustainable-growth/ Tue, 14 Jun 2022 07:06:10 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/new-report-reveals-fintechs-are-increasingly-focused-on-ethical-and-sustainable-growth/ Enter Wall Street with StreetInsider Premium. Claim your one week free trial here. New research from the Payment Association identifies sustainability superheroes working within the FinTech industry at the forefront of ethical and sustainable growth The report offers businesses real-world advice, inspiration and best practices, comprised of case studies from Mastercard, FIS and Algbra The […]]]>

Enter Wall Street with StreetInsider Premium. Claim your one week free trial here.


  • New research from the Payment Association identifies sustainability superheroes working within the FinTech industry at the forefront of ethical and sustainable growth
  • The report offers businesses real-world advice, inspiration and best practices, comprised of case studies from Mastercard, FIS and Algbra
  • The project also shows that members of The Payment Association are making significant progress towards embracing sustainability, with over 90% measuring progress towards gender equity and 60% seeking to reduce waste. of their supply chain.

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A new white paper published by The Payments Association (formerly Emerging Payments Association or EPA) aims to become a practical guide to ethical and sustainable growth (ESG) for the FinTech industry.

As Sustainability Superheroes: A Practical Guide to ESG for FinTechs highlights, the rules of trade are changing. Whereas in previous decades the sole objective of business leaders was to maximize returns for shareholders, new paradigms such as ESG and stakeholder capitalism mean that a balance must be found between the benefits and other concerns that fall under the rubric of “sustainability”.

Rather than simply urging companies to become more sustainable, the report offers advice, inspiration and real-world best practices from leading “sustainability superheroes”, including Charlie Bronks, SVP, Head of ESG at Crown Agents Bank, Irene Perez, Head Of Marketing at Gain The Lead and Jim Colvine, Senior Vice President, Priceless Planet at Mastercard. Case studies from leading companies such as Mastercard, FIS and Algbra show how various companies have addressed sustainability in their operations.

The project is anchored in data from members of the Payment Association on their own ESG priorities, and this data shows that the industry is making significant progress towards adopting sustainable practices and ethical goals:

  • Over 90% of companies measure progress towards gender equity

  • 80% consider the impacts of their products and services on social justice

  • 60% seek to reduce waste in their supply chain

  • 60% have identified their ESG stakeholders and prioritized them

Of course, the definition of sustainability varies widely and ethical goals are difficult to pin down (maximizing shareholder returns is arguably an ethical commitment, for example), but the results show that the FinTech industry is making major strides. towards integrating these ideas into his daily life. operations today.

Tony Craddock, CEO of the Payments Association, commented: “We are extremely proud to publish this report at a time when the industry as a whole is fully embracing ESG objectives. Now more than ever, people want to make more eco-friendly decisions and that extends to the brands they do business with. We are delighted that our report not only describes the ways in which companies can become more ethical and sustainable, but also that it shows that the majority of companies have already started on this path.

Jim Colvine, Senior Vice President, Priceless Planet at Mastercard, says: ‘Increasingly, people are recognizing that the things we produce, buy and consume are important to the environment of our planets. COVID-19 has only heightened those concerns, and now more than ever, people want to have a positive and lasting impact on the world.

He adds: “It is extremely encouraging to see the fintech industry recognize this. While most companies are already showing that they are on the right track to focus more on the environment and ethics, it is clear that progress is being made. At Mastercard, we are making strides by having a strong portfolio of eco-friendly solutions, including our carbon calculator, developed with Swedish fintech Doconomy, which makes it easy for consumers to understand their carbon footprint, and our lab Sustainable Innovation Center brings together innovators and customers to design climate-friendly digital solutions. It is our responsibility as an industry to meet the expectations of our consumers and ensure that sustainable goals are set and achieved, for the good of the planet.

To download a copy of the report, please visit: https://bit.ly/3aMVS4o

For more information about the work and services of The Payments Association, you can visit https://thepaymentsassociation.org/ or contact [email protected]

ENDS

About the Payments Association

The Payments Association (formerly Emerging Payments Association or EPA) is a community for all payments businesses, regardless of size, capacity, location or regulatory status. Its goal is to empower the most influential community in payments, where connections, collaboration and learning shape an industry that works for everyone. It works closely with industry players such as the Bank of England, FCA, UK Treasury, PSR, Pay.UK, UK Finance and Innovate Finance.

Through its comprehensive program of activities and the guidance of an independent advisory board of leading CEOs, The Payments Association facilitates connections and builds the bridges that unite the ecosystem and make it stronger. These activities include a program of monthly digital and face-to-face events, including an annual conference, PAY360, the PAY360 Awards Dinner, CEO roundtables and educational events. The Payments Association also manages six stakeholder project working groups covering financial inclusion, regulation, financial crime, cross-border payments, open banking and digital currencies. Volunteers in these groups represent the collective views of the industry and work together to ensure that the big issues facing the industry are effectively addressed. The association also conducts original research which is made available to members and authorities. These include monthly white papers, insightful interviews and advice from the industry’s most successful CEOs.

Media contact

Claire Holden, Sky Parlor

[email protected]

+44 (0)330 043 1315

Source: The Payments Association

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The ‘standardised’ drug that the UK consumes more than any other country https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/the-standardised-drug-that-the-uk-consumes-more-than-any-other-country/ Sun, 12 Jun 2022 14:20:21 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/the-standardised-drug-that-the-uk-consumes-more-than-any-other-country/ Going to college represents a fresh start and a new level of independence for young people across the country. And a big part of student culture is partying, drinking, and clubbing. For some, what begins with social drinking can quickly lead to a spiral of alcohol and drug use – something that is rarely explored […]]]>

Going to college represents a fresh start and a new level of independence for young people across the country.

And a big part of student culture is partying, drinking, and clubbing. For some, what begins with social drinking can quickly lead to a spiral of alcohol and drug use – something that is rarely explored when discussing the “college experience”.

A former student, who studied at a university in Liverpool and said part of drug use had become a “normalized” part of student life, has shared some of his experiences with cocaine.

READ MORE:“I wouldn’t wish it on anyone”: the growing impact of ketamine

They told ECHO: “It’s literally everywhere, it’s more surprising these days to hear someone not do it than to hear someone do it. It’s horrible even if it sucks you in .

“It starts off as an occasional thing on nights out, but it gets to a point where as soon as you get a drink, you end up consuming. That’s what happened with me, it started the first week when a friend of mine offered me cocaine, then it just got out of hand over time.”

A survey by the National Union of Students found that two in five students in the UK use drugs, with cannabis alongside cocaine being the most commonly used illicit drugs. Meanwhile, the UK is known as the “cocaine capital of Europe” with the continent’s highest number of young cocaine users, according to The Mirror.

Besides the more obvious risks of heart attack, stroke, or physical dependence, cocaine can cause long-term mental damage, especially to young minds.

Regular cocaine use can cause anxiety and paranoia, which can actually last a long time. According to the FRANK Addiction Service, drugs can also bring previous mental health issues to the surface, and if a relative has had mental health issues, there could be an increased risk for you.

The financial impact of a cocaine addiction can also be devastating, as explained by a former Liverpool University student who developed an addiction to the drug. They told ECHO: “It’s an expensive, expensive thing, you keep wanting more so you keep going and keep going, I spent hundreds of pounds in a day or two and had to resort to loans and help from friends in the past.”

For help and advice on drug addiction, you can visit the NHS website here.

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Revolut launches B2B USD payment transfers to the UK https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/revolut-launches-b2b-usd-payment-transfers-to-the-uk/ Fri, 10 Jun 2022 20:53:37 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/revolut-launches-b2b-usd-payment-transfers-to-the-uk/ FinTech app Revolut has announced that it will enable its business customers to make free US dollar (USD) transfers to the UK, IBS Intelligence reported on Friday (June 10). The new feature allows Revolut corporate customers to receive payments in USD through the Automated Clearing House (ACH) network for payments of up to $1 million. […]]]>

FinTech app Revolut has announced that it will enable its business customers to make free US dollar (USD) transfers to the UK, IBS Intelligence reported on Friday (June 10).

The new feature allows Revolut corporate customers to receive payments in USD through the Automated Clearing House (ACH) network for payments of up to $1 million. Users will still be able to use International Bank Account Number (IBAN) details to obtain USD payments through the SWIFT network.

“With so many UK-based companies doing business in the US, we are delighted to be getting closer to Accounts Without Borders,” James Gibson, chief commercial officer of Revolut, said in the report. “Allowing our customers to receive payments from a foreign country without requiring the sender to use SWIFT saves them time and money.”

Customers can access their US account in the app by going to the “Home” menu, choosing the USD pocket, tapping the US flag, and then selecting “Local”, according to the report. From there, they will see the account details that senders can use to deposit money into their accounts.

Based in London and founded in 2015, Revolut started out as a prepaid card offering low-cost foreign exchange (FX) fees, but quickly expanded its product and service offerings and branched out into other countries.

The company received a European banking license in 2021 and has banking activities in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden. The company has applied for UK and US banking licenses

Read more: Lack of UK banking license thwarts Revolut’s super app ambition

Research by PYMNTS and Visa found that at least half of UK and US businesses considering cross-border payments innovations expect them to deliver three key benefits: lower costs, better management cash flow and reduced fraud.

See more : US and UK businesses split over enhanced X-Border payment technology’s fraud-fighting ability

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: THE CUSTOM PURCHASING EXPERIENCE STUDY – MAY 2022

About: PYMNTS’ survey of 2,094 consumers for The Tailored Shopping Experience report, a collaboration with Elastic Path, shows where merchants are succeeding and where they need to up their game to deliver a personalized shopping experience.

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Swiss cantonal bank BLKB uses NetGuardians to fight payment fraud https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/swiss-cantonal-bank-blkb-uses-netguardians-to-fight-payment-fraud/ Thu, 09 Jun 2022 07:03:25 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/swiss-cantonal-bank-blkb-uses-netguardians-to-fight-payment-fraud/ NetGuardians, a Swiss provider of financial fraud prevention solutions, has signed Basellandschaftliche Kantonalbank (BLKB) as a new client. BLKB fights financial fraud with NetGuardians BLKB has selected NetGuardians’ fraud mitigation software and plans to go live in the second half of this year. “Everything we do is for our customers,” says Christoph Schaer, Chief Operating […]]]>

NetGuardians, a Swiss provider of financial fraud prevention solutions, has signed Basellandschaftliche Kantonalbank (BLKB) as a new client.

BLKB fights financial fraud with NetGuardians

BLKB has selected NetGuardians’ fraud mitigation software and plans to go live in the second half of this year.

“Everything we do is for our customers,” says Christoph Schaer, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of BLKB.

“By working with NetGuardians, we will be able to offer them the best protection against fraudsters and improve our service to them.

“The precision of the software means that we will only contact them when a transaction is very likely to be fraud. This has two benefits – we will stop more fraud and contact our customers less often. It’s a win-win. »

BLKB has 850 employees, 25 branches and total assets of more than 32 billion francs ($32.8 billion).

NetGuardians says its software uses advanced behavioral analytics, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to create “highly accurate” customer profiles. All transactions related to an account are continuously monitored across all channels, compared to the client’s profile and given a risk score.

As a result, BLKB will experience a “massive reduction” in the number of false positives and will be able to reduce operational costs, according to the vendor. He adds that banks using NetGuardians’ software have reduced customer friction by 85% and enjoy more than 75% lower operating costs.

NetGuardians’ software is used by approximately 80 banks and wealth managers in 30 countries, including 40% of all cantonal banks in Switzerland (there are 24 of them). Last month, it announced another cantonal bank as a client, the Luzerner Kantonalbank (LUKB).

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why money laundering is the new global epidemic https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/why-money-laundering-is-the-new-global-epidemic/ Tue, 07 Jun 2022 13:36:09 +0000 https://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/why-money-laundering-is-the-new-global-epidemic/ Superyachts seized, banks sanctioned and assets frozen. The Ukrainian conflict has brought to light a problem that has been bubbling under the surface for many years: Russian money laundering. The wealth of Russian oligarchs is not new. London even has a “red square” of real estate owned by Russian billionaires. However, as each penalty is […]]]>

Superyachts seized, banks sanctioned and assets frozen. The Ukrainian conflict has brought to light a problem that has been bubbling under the surface for many years: Russian money laundering.

The wealth of Russian oligarchs is not new. London even has a “red square” of real estate owned by Russian billionaires. However, as each penalty is handed down, it becomes increasingly clear that money laundering is rampant in the UK and beyond. In fact, the BBC recently reported that “at least £1.5 billion of Russian-owned British properties [has
been] accused of financial crime or having ties to the Kremlin.

Although many Russian oligarchs and corporations are now on the sanctions list, money laundering is not a problem that will go away anytime soon. Banks, law firms, accountants and real estate agencies need to properly identify and verify customers. Taking shortcuts or missing key parts of the process will result in hefty fines and brand damage.

The Risks of Missing Money Laundering

The usual way Russian oligarchs hide their “dark money” abroad is through shell companies. This is a company that exists only on paper and has no offices or employees, but may have a bank account, hold passive investments, or be the registered owner of assets, such as intellectual property or ships.

British Overseas Territories such as the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands are favorite destinations for this business – and these tax havens provide a direct route into the UK economy. The oligarchs then hire the best lawyers, auditors, bankers and lobbyists from around the world to develop legal ways to conceal and launder their funds.

Despite being reputed to be a playground for Russian money laundering, the British Parliament has in the past been accused of “turning a blind eye”. It was only due to recent events that the government took action by reintroducing the Economic Crimes Bill. This will establish a new register listing the ultimate owners of property or land in the UK that has been purchased by foreign entities.

That’s all well and good, but what are the direct risks for companies?

Besides the ethical implications of being wrapped up in corrupt money laundering, businesses – from real estate to banking – need to consider what is at stake here. On the one hand, the legal and regulatory penalties are becoming exorbitant. NatWest was fined a whopping £264.8m last year after being convicted of three separate offenses relating to anti-money laundering failures. On top of that, you need to consider negative publicity; damage to the company’s reputation and a negative effect on the bottom line.

Ensure your processes are rigorous

None of these fates are particularly attractive. That’s why compliance is a must – regulations protect us from crime and ensure that businesses meet legal requirements. But that doesn’t mean it’s an easy task.

Money laundering can be difficult to spot if you don’t know the signs. After all, the people who do this work hard to keep the authorities in the dark. In addition to complying with AML regulations and doing due diligence when onboarding a new customer, it’s smart (and for regulated companies, mandatory) to keep an eye out for irregular activity and things that go wrong. just don’t match.

As new data suggests that UK properties worth around £1.5bn were bought by Russians with Kremlin links or oligarchs who are the subject of corruption allegations, here are some red flags to watch out for when it comes to real estate.

The first red flag is third-party involvement, as someone other than the buyer handles most of the purchase, or the buyer joins the process at the last second to avoid background checks. Another red flag is when a property is being sold at a price that just doesn’t seem right – for example, the purchase price is much higher or lower than expected. This could be a sign of price manipulation.

Of course, it’s not just the UK property market that the oligarchs are using to hide their ‘dark money’. And red flags aren’t necessarily proof of illegal behavior, but they could indicate that further investigation is needed.

This is where new technologies have a crucial role to play. We are seeing an increase in the number of companies using managed services or introducing technology into their AML processes as they look for ways to streamline their operations and stay one step ahead of criminals.

Digitizing compliance or using AI for transaction monitoring has several benefits. This means your records, customer details and transaction data are stored in one place. The structure and documentation for all beneficial owners is clear, with your risk assessments on each customer easily auditable. It’s all about freeing up administration time, not just meeting compliance requirements.

The Future of Money Laundering and Russian Sanctions

In a time of heightened scrutiny of the UK financial market and in the face of Russian sanctions and government financial misconduct, there has never been a better time than now to tackle money laundering. There are many ways to manage compliance, but the important thing is to have a process in place, so you and your staff don’t miss any crucial details or signs of illegal activity.

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