When I attended college, the university required every student to take two courses in world civilization to graduate. Part one covered history up to 1500 and part two covered history post-1500. Needless to say, I gained a greater appreciation for history and I learned that each civilization, peoples or culture made significant contributions to the complicated web that would become the future. From the ancient Greeks, Romans, Chinese and Mayans, to the early modern world, cultures have left significant traces in every aspect of modern society. The impact of civilizations and cultures that came before us can be seen in our political systems, infrastructure, writing, art, philosophy, math, science, astronomy, languages, architecture, technology, agriculture, food, music, medicine and much more. Most of us can identify the society that developed certain prominent things, such as where the Olympics began or where the first signs of a republic government can be found or even where the industrial revolution was born. Traces of past civilizations or cultures can be linked to us in the 21st century. The question remains: What will future generations link to as the most significant contribution to the world from the 21st century? Will it be the beginning of a fully immersive metaverse, also known as Web3?
The headline article “Walking Into Webs: AML and the Metaverse,” written by Joseph Mari and Stuart Davis, postulates that the use of blockchain technology—which has ushered in the era of Web3—has started the revolution of a “democratization of finance and has yielded some interesting advances…on what money is and what role traditional financial institutions [FIs] should play in holding that money.” This has a significant impact not only on FIs but on anti-financial crime (AFC) professionals. As described in the article, the metaverse will only continue to grow. The article discusses the important concepts of a permissionless financial system, meta-finance, the meta-sheriff and the fact that future generations will be thoroughly engrossed in the digital space during their lifetime.
Web3 also begs the question of human rights. This edition contains a candid overview of how Web3 can help solve human trafficking and terrorism. More information can be read in the article “The Future of Human Rights on Web3.”
One of the many benefits of our modern civilization is the ability to connect easily and quickly via technology. Many of us still rely on relationships and networking when either searching for a job or recruiting someone for an open position. The second headline article, “Veterans: An Untapped Talent Pool in AFC,” shares why veterans have the skills and traits that translate well into AFC compliance roles. In addition, through many years of interacting with the ACAMS membership, I know that career development and progression are key for the AFC professional. As such, this edition features two more articles dedicated to career guidance: “Red Hot Careers Worth Considering” and “Resume Advice for the AFC Professional.”
Another underlying theme in this annual conference edition is the importance of having a robust risk assessment program. With the rapid speed at which technology changes, criminals are keeping up to date with new technologies and are using them to outsmart the financial systems.
I always enjoy working on the annual conference edition because of the opportunity to meet many of you at the ACAMS Las Vegas Conference and to personally discuss the articles within the issue. I hope that our global civilization will be looked upon fondly by future generations as a time when the metaverse began to rise fully as our major contribution to future civilizations, joining the complicated web of history.
Karla Monterrosa-Yancey, CAMS
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