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Elder financial exploitation (EFE) and elder fraud continue to be serious crimes in the United States. EFE crimes are rising at an alarming rate. With no signs of dissipating, financial institutions are in a unique position to detect and report these crimes. With 1 in 10 individuals over the age of 60 falling victim to this crime, it is critical for financial institutions to know the behavioral and financial red flags of elder financial abuse and ramp up training programs.

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Detect and prevent EFE at your financial institution. View our webinar Elder Financial Exploitation – The Hidden Crime.

Financial institutions must structure their compliance programs to be risk-based to ensure that BSA/AML compliance programs are reasonably designed to meet regulatory requirements. Understanding its risk profile enables the institution to apply appropriate risk management processes to the BSA/AML program to mitigate and manage risk and comply with BSA regulatory requirements. Although each institution’s risk process will differ slightly, the best practice steps in this BSA/AML risk assessment checklist will enable your financial institution to understand and justify its risk-focused compliance program.

Please note: This is not a BSA/AML risk assessment template, because each institution’s process will differ.

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Looking for assistance enhancing your BSA/AML program? Learn how Abrigo’s experienced AML Advisory Team can identify your BSA/AML risk and evaluate the effectiveness of the controls in place.

Read more about How to Conduct an Exam-Proof BSA/AML Risk Assessment in our recent blog post.

Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NBFIs) must adhere to Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) regulations and have an anti-money laundering (AML) program commensurate with the risk profile of their business model. Customer due diligence (CDD), commonly known as the fifth pillar of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) compliance, is the cornerstone of a robust BSA/AML compliance program. In addition to general onboarding procedures your organization requires, it is also critical to know your customers or with whom and where they conduct business. Your CDD program should be aligned with and supported by your risk assessment.

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Looking for additional resources on AML compliance for your Non-Bank Financial Institution? Watch the complimentary webinar, AML Compliance and Sanctions Requirements for NBFIs, or learn more about how Abrigo can help all types of financial businesses as a true partner for your compliance program.

Slow decisions and frustrating loan application processes are among borrowers’ biggest gripes with banks and credit unions compared with online or alternative lenders. Many typical origination processes generate complaints from staff and management of traditional financial institutions, too.

Here are 10 frustrating aspects of the application and underwriting processes that your financial institution can avoid by switching to a loan origination system (LOS). How many of these do your lenders and analysts encounter every day?

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With mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and other institution consolidations on the rise, it’s essential to conduct proper due diligence. Integrating programs creates challenges for Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) Officers responsible for developing an integration plan while ensuring ongoing compliance with existing day-to-day tasks. Regulators expect that an institution’s AML compliance integrity will keep pace with its growth.

Executive management should take precautions to ensure that a strong culture of compliance, including BSA/AML, is reflected in their merger and acquisition plans. Compliance professionals must be prepared to communicate the high-risk operations, locations, products, services, and customers the target offers to management and any plans to mitigate that risk.

While not exhaustive, this checklist can guide acquiring institutions to consolidate successfully and maintain AML best practices.

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If M&A seems daunting, or if you are short-staffed, Abrigo Advisory Services can help. Learn more about how we can assist during this transition.

As your BSA/AML monitoring output is tied directly to the data being imported into the system from the core, it is critical that the data quality being imported is correct and contains all the pertinent information to be included for reporting/monitoring purposes, OFAC and 314(a) requirements, etc. Data should be monitored and reviewed regularly to ensure any errors are corrected to provide better output for the BSA/AML monitoring system. This data integrity review checklist outlines steps to help you complete this task.

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Looking for additional help with your institution’s data integrity review? Learn more about how our expert BSA/AML consultants can help.

Customer Due Diligence (CDD) is the cornerstone of a strong BSA/AML compliance program. In fact, CDD is commonly known as the fifth pillar of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) compliance. In addition to general onboarding procedures required by your financial institution, regulatory expectation is that you know your customer, with relative certainty. It is also critical to know your customer’s customers, or with whom and where they conduct business. Periodic Enhanced Due Diligence (EDD) reviews should also be conducted for higher risk customers and entities.

This checklist outlines key elements to a strong CDD program, which should be risk-focused and aligned with your enterprise-wide risk assessment.

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Looking for additional resources on conducting due diligence at your financial institution? Register for the complimentary Abrigo webinar, Beneficial Ownership and Due Diligence: Stepping Up Your Institution’s Information Collection Practices.

When FinCEN issues advisories, financial institutions need to know what this means for them regarding their suspicious activity monitoring and reporting programs. FinCEN has identified financial red flag indicators of ransomware-related illicit activity. These indicators can be used in training front line staff as well as AML and fraud investigators.

While much of the cybercrime detected comes from simple techniques such as phishing, others are becoming more sophisticated and complex. Malicious software often encrypts data and prevents or limits users from accessing their system until a ransom is paid. This guide provides summarized examples of trends, typologies, and indicators of ransomware that financial institutions should be aware of, as identified by FinCEN.

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Cyber attacks are the most significant threat to U.S. financial institutions. Learn more about what your institution can do to prevent and detect cyber fraud. View our blog, FinCEN Guidance on Cyber Fraud – Video.

As required by the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 (AMLA), the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published its first-ever Priorities list for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CTF) policy. Financial institutions can begin taking steps to prepare for the increased scrutiny in each of these published Priorities. Taking a proactive approach will show the examiners that the criticality is understood and taken seriously.

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Looking for additional insight into the published AML/CFT Priorities? Watch our webinar, FinCEN AML/CFT Priorities: What Do They Mean for Your Institution?

The decision to bank cannabis-related businesses (CRBs) is not an easy yes or no question. There are multiple things to consider as you make this decision and many things to do afterwards to ensure you maintain compliance. This list of questions isn’t exhaustive and is meant to serve as a basis for the questions you should ask as you navigate this space. Laws, regulations, and even cannabis itself are always changing and you and your staff need to be aware of the latest laws and developments, including variants. Download this checklist for questions to ask as you make your decision of whether or not to bank CRBs.

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Gain insight on how to manage regulatory compliance and maintain a risk-based program, should your institution decide to bank CRBs. View our webinar, Navigating Regulatory Haze: Banking Cannabis-Related Businesses and Managing Risk.

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