2021 saw some massive fines for money laundering and financial crime failings. HSBC £63m, NatWest £264m and Credit Suisse £147m are three examples. There were many others where the fines were below £1m. If anyone ever thought that fines were ‘just a cost of doing business’ the time for such thinking must surely be over.
People have told us in the past that paying fines is cheaper than the costs of putting robust procedures in place that may or not be picked up by regulators, so ‘it was worth the risk’. But things have now changed – irrespective of the conduct risk issues, failures draw regulatory penalties against individuals as well as the firms they work for.
While the 2021 fines were predominately driven by failures involving substantial cash transactions, it is not just cash transactions where firms need to be aware of money laundering risks. Yabber voice monitoring is becoming a ‘game changer’ in call oversight in many business activities including assisting with money laundering and financial crime supervision.
With our ability to tailor our approach to each company’s requirements, we can cost-effectively monitor 100% of all calls. We can then drill into each call looking at keywords and phrases helping firms identify the matched and unmatched words and phrases that are defined in agreed search parameters (that’s the individual tailoring bit). While this process solves many oversight quandaries, it is particularly efficient at making sure agents ask the questions they are meant to ask and that they deal appropriately with the answers they get. This means that second line defence can monitor compliance in a focused and targeted way, rather than the historically inefficient way of analysing a small sample.
So, a red flag response to a question needs to be recognised and dealt with so that businesses can be sure their colleagues are not skipping issues to ‘put the business on the books’. This process will also satisfy the regulator that any previous attitude to fines that was in place, has been replaced with a more relevant focus on good behaviours.
We know Yabber helps firms improve compliance, reduce costs, and increase revenue. Our combination of technology and human expertise means we can provide solutions efficiently and cost effectively. To learn more, arrange a demo of the system or simply have a chat, give us a call to find out how we can help.