the full picture, this week – 10 May 2019

by | May 10, 2019 | All Blog Posts, the full picture this week, Featured

Let us put you in the picture this week, as we round-up and react to the latest news from the financial crime compliance and technology sectors.

This time, we highlight the new measures from UK Companies House that mean businesses will be bolstered by enhanced protection against money laundering.

Elsewhere, there is the news that it is believed that political uncertainty as a result of Brexit has had a direct impact on London-based tech firms’ ability to access capital.

These issues, and more from around the globe, give us plenty to dive into for your Full Picture, This Week…

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enhanced protection against money laundering

Businesses will be better protected from fraud as a result of UK Companies House reforms that will do more to safeguard the personal data of owners.

the full picture, this week – 10 May 2019 | Kelly Tolhurst, UK Business Minister | encompass blogBusiness Minister Kelly Tolhurst unveiled the proposed reforms, which will be put in place with the aim of minimising the burden on law abiding companies, as well as contributing to UK efforts to tackle financial crime.

The reforms would help increase the accuracy and usefulness of information held on companies and their key people.

Explaining the developments and how they will bring a positive change, Ms Tolhurst said:

The UK already has some of the strongest protections in the world against money laundering. We are ranked as one of the top countries worldwide for cracking down on economic crime – protecting businesses and consumers. The reforms will support the fight against the use of dirty money in the UK and enhance the protections for entrepreneurs and directors from criminal activity. Knowing that a company’s information is accurate and transparent is a fundamental part of a leading business environment – giving entrepreneurs and businesses the confidence they need to do business in the UK.

Read more on the issue here.

the encompass view

This move by Companies House reinforces the commitment of governments globally to improve transparency around the beneficial ownership of companies, particularly as a means of supporting the financial services industry in meeting their AML obligations.

As this transparency initiative continues to gather pace, regulated firms are faced with the problem of quickly and effectively digesting all the sources of data required to ensure they have the best possible picture of a customer.

Adapting and expanding internal systems to integrate new and enhanced data sources is something which continues to cause problems for many firms, often proving complex and time consuming. It is often difficult to access to the technical support needed to carry out integration work in a timely manner as sources become available, and this means Know Your Customer (KYC) processes become more testing and manual, taking valuable time away from employees.

encompass supports customers in these tasks by doing the heavy lifting involved in integration work involving new global data sources. Any customer with existing access to encompass via our UI or API can quickly and easily switch on new data sources so that the required data can be automatically retrieved as part of the customer’s automated KYC process.

the encompass view

This move by Companies House reinforces the commitment of governments globally to improve transparency around the beneficial ownership of companies, particularly as a means of supporting the financial services industry in meeting their AML obligations.

As this transparency initiative continues to gather pace, regulated firms are faced with the problem of quickly and effectively digesting all the sources of data required to ensure they have the best possible picture of a customer.

Adapting and expanding internal systems to integrate new and enhanced data sources is something which continues to cause problems for many firms, often proving complex and time consuming. It is often difficult to access to the technical support needed to carry out integration work in a timely manner as sources become available, and this means Know Your Customer (KYC) processes become more testing and manual, taking valuable time away from employees.

encompass supports customers in these tasks by doing the heavy lifting involved in integration work involving new global data sources. Any customer with existing access to encompass via our UI or API can quickly and easily switch on new data sources so that the required data can be automatically retrieved as part of the customer’s automated KYC process.

Robert Phillips | Data Product Manager, encompass

Brexit hampering tech investment

Political uncertainty has had a direct impact on London-based tech firms’ ability to access capital, according to new research that has pointed to a sharp fall in venture capital investment.

the full picture, this week – 10 May 2019 | Tech London Advocates | encompass blogTrade body Tech London Advocates found that 87% of tech firms felt the Brexit process had tarnished London’s reputation as a business centre, while 39% said it had become more difficult to access capital since the referendum.

One in four of the 200 tech executives surveyed said they had lost out on investment as a direct result of the UK’s planned exit from the EU.

Elaborating on what this means for companies, Tech London Advocates founder Russ Shaw commented:

It is no surprise that London tech investment fell in 2018 when so many tech companies are experiencing investors deferring decisions until they see some clarity around Brexit. One thing is certain – the political situation is harming our fastest-growing industry and making access to capital and talent harder than ever before.

FStech has more.

technology the driver in Australia

Elements including regtech and open banking are the key drivers of technology-led change in the Australian banking sector, according to a new report.

The evolvement of fintech firms and open banking, among other things, is likely to bring significant changes to the sector, in terms of the products offered and the way they are delivered, research by S&P Global Ratings found.

In the report, entitled ‘Future Of Banking: Fintech Flags Turning Point For Australian Banking’, S&P said that technological developments can give Australian banks the ability to differentiate themselves and improve customer service.

Customers are likely to benefit from increasingly personalised product offerings, facilitated by growing data availability which allows banks to see customers’ financial profiles across multiple institutions and industries, said the author Nico DeLange.

“The ability of banks to take advantage of financial technology may ultimately affect their competitive dynamics—one of the key considerations in our assessment of credit quality,” he added.

Read more.

Irish ownership in spotlight

Company ownership is also a hot topic in Ireland, as it has been revealed that businesses will face more scrutiny, thanks to a shift in focus to a central register.

As part of measures to tackle fraud and white-collar crime, those based in the country have been told they will have until the end of November to submit information on their beneficial owners to the register, or risk significant fines.

The regulations form part of EU-wide measures and have been specifically designed to bolster the response in the battle against money laundering. The majority of Irish businesses will need to be compliant with new rules.

The EU (Anti-Money Laundering: Beneficial Ownership of Corporate Entities) Regulations 2019 continue the transposition into Irish law, with it being stated that the establishment of a Central Register of Beneficial Ownership, which sets out who can access the information on that register, is required.

news in brief

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has highlighted some of its key recommendations to combat money laundering through real estate. In its briefing document, titled ‘understanding money laundering through real estate transactions’, the body talks about important considerations when it comes to dealing with the problem.

The Bank of Canada and the Monetary Authority of Singapore have used distributed ledger technology to send each other central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). The two central banks say that cross-border payments are slow and costly, relying on a correspondent banking network that is subject to counterparty risk, inefficient liquidity management and cumbersome reconciliation. Find out more from Finextra.

Sri Lanka is working to strengthen its Anti-Money Laundering (AML) measures, as well as other aspects of how it responds to financial crime. The national AML and Countering the Financing of Terrorism policy framework will be bolstered as a result. Read about what is being done to stamp out the issues here.

The need for digital transformation in UK financial services has been a subject that has been gaining focus in recent months. After a survey looking into what needs to be done was commissioned by FStech and OpenText, Gerard Gibney of OpenText discussed the landscape as it is and how it should be developed. Find out what he had to say.

the latest from encompass

On the blog this week, encompass co-founder Roger Carson examined the rise of the digital customer profile and its impact when it comes to getting KYC right. Read it here.

We also looked at the topic of de-risking and KYC automation, in light of Cyprus’ new business shift. Read the blog here.

The world of Know Your Customer (KYC), compliance and financial crime never sleeps, and if your challenges are keeping you up at night let us help. encompass intelligently automates information and news discovery for KYC requirements for onboarding, event-driven refresh and remediation.

Driven by your internal policies, our platform automatically constructs corporate ownership structures, discovers beneficial owners, and in minutes screens all relevant entities and persons for regulatory, reputational and financial risk.