Anti-Money Laundering (AML) is a critical aspect of financial measures and regulations designed to prevent the illegal generation of income and the conversion of illicit funds into legitimate assets. Money laundering is a global issue that often involves complex networks and schemes that transcend borders, making it difficult to combat effectively.
“The impact of money laundering cannot be underestimated,” says global fraud expert and thought leader Clive Gungudoo, MoData’s Director of Financial Crimes and Risk Management. Clive has more than 25 years’ experience in multinational banking, technology and financial services, having worked with four major banks, including as Global Executive Head of Fraud Insights and Analytics at Standard Bank Group.
“Money laundering allows criminals to hide the origins of money that is illegally obtained through drug trafficking, terrorism financing, human trafficking, ID fraud, money mules and corruption. If not kept in check it can undermine the credibility of financial systems by flooding them with illegal funds, which in turn can destabilise economies, and distort market prices. In terms of national security, terrorist organisations often use money laundering techniques to disguise the sources of their funding, making it difficult for authorities to intervene and crack down and on their activities.” Regulatory fines and Reputational damage are also a big concern for financial institutions, says Clive, as it undermines public trust.
The techniques used by criminals to disguise the illicit origin of funds are always changing, which is why government, financial institutions and regulatory bodies are continually evolving AML measures and regulations, implementing sophisticated monitoring systems, and promoting international cooperation in the hope of staying one step ahead of scammers and money launderers.
“One of the big money laundering trends we are seeing at the moment is the increase in money mules,” says Clive. “A money mule is someone who transfers or moves illegally acquired money on behalf of someone else.” He says criminals recruit money mules to help launder proceeds derived primarily from online scams and fraud, or crimes like human trafficking and drug trafficking.
“Other scams include fraudulent account openings, account take-overs, voice scams, romance scams, crypto investment scams and business email compromise,” says Clive. “ID theft and impersonation is also on the increase, which is coupled with an increase in digital document forgery for fraudulent account origination and KYC vetting.”
Powerful AML solutions
MoData’s software-as-a-service marketplace for all financial crime risk management operations, helps financial organisations and businesses across Africa and the Middle East implement AML solutions that are innovative, intelligent, intuitive and safe.
MoData offers several leading-edge AML solutions to its clients. “The most effective way to combat money laundering by money mules is through the use of human behavioural biometric intelligence on digital platforms to proactively spot mule or money laundering accounts ahead of inbound transactions”, says Clive. “MoData’s BioCatch platform delivers an advanced biometric behavioural intelligence solution to protect against fraud and money laundering activities. This AI-driven platform transforms customers’ digital behaviour into powerful insights to deliver advanced fraud and money laundering protection without compromising the user experience. It does this by collecting thousands of interactions per session and analysing them against global historical profiles and red-flagging possible money laundering activity or fraudulent behaviour.” These actionable insights enable MoData clients to act in real time to identify and mitigate risk.
MoData’s Transaction Forensics software helps reduce false positives on existing AML systems. “Real Time Transaction Monitoring allows organisations to be proactive rather than reactive by applying a combination of artificial intelligence and expert rules on big data to detect and prevent new, unknown and known fraud and money laundering threats and typologies in real time. This greatly reduces false red flags – and is much more accurate when it does flag an issue,” says Clive. This helps to reduce operational costs, improves defence against new attacks and improves risk scoring.
To help thwart skilled fraudsters who expertly manipulate documents such as IDs, payslips etc so that the changes cannot be detected by the naked eye, MoData offers a sophisticated Digital Document Forgery Detection solution. “There are professional document forgery services available to money launderers and scamsters. These fraudulent documents are so expertly done that regular checks and balances and manual reviews simply don’t cut it,” explains Clive. “A sophisticated Document Forgery Detection service is essential and can be applied across the customer lifecycle – from customer onboarding to new credit applications, helping to combat ID theft, impersonation and KYC vetting, especially when money mules are recruited to bypass facial biometric authentication with the department home affairs as they are real people with legitimate ID documents.”
Mitigating through collaboration
Addressing Fraud and AML threats requires a multi-faceted approach involving collaboration between financial institutions, software solution providers, regulatory bodies, governments and law enforcement agencies to create robust systems, enact stringent regulations, and employ sophisticated technological solutions to combat this global menace.
“Through insight- and skill-sharing, Fraud and AML conferences and educational industry seminars that highlight our innovative technologies and solutions, MoData is playing an active role in revolutionising the way banks, financial institutions and organisations approach financial crime prevention,” says Clive. “In this way we empower them to stay ahead in the fight against sophisticated criminals and money launderers.”
Many of MoData’s solutions underscore this commitment to collaboration. For example, BioCatch offers a secure cross customer consortium to exchange an account reputation score in real time to enable intra and inter-bank mule account detection.
MoData enables organisations to implement a layered approach and deploy modernised technology that protects their customers and their reputation. “Our monthly subscription-based pricing and pay-as-you-use model means organisations can gain direct access to our innovative products and services with no massive upfront investment,” explains Clive. “As subject matter experts and thought leaders we are continually scanning the market for emerging trends – and we always make sure our technology stack is current and relevant. This means we’re able to give our current and new customers in Africa and the Middle East access to leading global Fraud and AML software that fits their market and needs at a competitive price point which includes implementation, professional services and support.”
MoData provides leading global fraud, AML and risk management services that enable organisations to respond to financial crime and mitigate risks as they happen in real time. “By empowering businesses to deter financial crimes in a transparent and responsible manner, MoData helps protect these businesses from reputational, regulatory, financial and customer risks,” says Clive
For the past three decades, MoData has been offering innovative, intuitive and intelligent digital business solutions for the financial services sector, including implementation, professional advisory services and support.
The MoData team of specialists prides itself on its agility and entrepreneurial approach to finding smart solutions to clients’ needs, with an emphasis on cost optimization, back-office transformation and customer satisfaction. Their diverse range of product offerings means they are able to provide businesses with everything they need to transform into an effective digital organization.
• To find out how MoData can help your organisation protect itself against fraud and AML threats, reach out to us for a free consultation and demo of our SaaS Fraud and AML solutions. Click here.