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22 September 2017

How a data-first approach is the right way to address financial crime

Ted Datta

As we wrote here and here, we recently made five short compliance-related videos featuring speakers from our AML4 and sanctions forum.

The third video in this series features a brief Q&A session with Anthony Cosgrove MBE, co-founder of Harbr, a company dedicated to helping businesses securely store and access AML and other compliance-related data in the cloud.

Here, Anthony lays out his central thesis that adopting a data-first approach can significantly help regulators and financial institutions to more effectively deal with the key challenges they currently face when trying to confront and combat financial crime.

Anthony begins by expressing his belief that, as things stand right now, there doesn't exist "an optimal relationship between financial institutions and regulators for addressing complex financial crime". He attributes this to, as he puts it, "the fact that there is a compliance paradigm, as opposed to a more collaborative framework," which too narrowly focuses compliance efforts on regulations, which can often have a limited, border-specific scope.

Anthony's solution to what he sees as a counterproductive state of affairs rests in "focusing on data and taking a 'data-first' approach to addressing complex financial crime". By doing this, he contends, "you start to create an environment whereby you can build a far more optimal response to complex financial crime, and ideally one that's based more on collaboration than compliance". Instrumental in pulling off such a data-first approach, Anthony believes, is the "adoption of cloud, which represents a great opportunity to deploy new technologies, and to do so at scale".

He concludes that taking this pivotal step offers businesses and regulators alike the capability to "enable much wider collaborative efforts and data-sharing across borders and across organisations, and that really has the potential to start shifting the existing compliance paradigm into one that's more collaborative and hopefully more optimal in addressing complex financial crime".

We’ll continue to publish commentaries of these videos – such as the one below – over the next couple of weeks.

Ted Datta

Ted Datta, Director of GRC Solutions

Ted helps organisations streamline their due diligence, onboarding and risk management processes. He is a regular contributor to Europe’s leading compliance
and financial crime forums.

Ted helps organisations streamline their due diligence, onboarding and risk management processes. He is a regular contributor to Europe’s leading compliance
and financial crime forums.

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