Always home. Safety made simple. Blink and you’re home. Fear stops here. If these taglines sound familiar, it might mean you have a security system at your place of residence. Constant vigilance or surveillance has become commonplace in our society. We are ever watchful of our belongings and our loved ones. Back to security systems, most allow you to be part of a geographic neighborhood watch. These networks allow others to post of dangers they see or criminals that may be lurking around, and to communicate directly with law enforcement by reporting crimes in real-time. These networks also serve the greater good as users gather intel to narrow down the whereabouts of a criminal or to identify a criminal. In our anti-financial crime network we also function much like the security system networks; we are able to communicate with each other the latest trends and activity we see in our financial institutions and we partner with local law enforcement to help bring down criminals. Gracing the cover of this ACAMS Today edition is the article Flash to Bang: Left of Boom, Right of Boom, right of boom. The author, Dennis Lormel, applies a military tactic and perspective on how anti-financial crime professionals can assist in fighting terrorism on the front lines. Lormel states: “…financial institutions are either facilitation tools or detection mechanisms for the illicit flow of funds.” Through our constant vigilance we can all become detection mechanisms and attack the biggest vulnerability of terrorists—finance.
Another timely article is the focus of our second headline, Virtual Assets: Calibrating the Compass of Suspicion. It covers the Financial Action Task Force’s recommendations and guidance for virtual assets and virtual assets service providers. The authors share their research of suspicious indicators they have analyzed from suspicious activity reports over several months. These indicators are a start to understanding and reporting suspicious activity in an evolving space. We will see more to come on this topic in the coming months.
This issue also covers the various European Union (EU) Directives, action plans and implementation deadlines for EU member states in 2019. Later on, we review the challenge of trade-based money laundering (TBML) in India and how India is combating TBML schemes and fraud. The career guidance section shares success tips by AML veteran and ACAMS’ advisory board member Dan Soto.
In addition, I am happy to share with all of you the redesign of the ACAMS Today magazine. We hope you will enjoy the new, fresh look and continue to read the print magazine on a quarterly basis and visit acamstoday.org frequently for the latest articles, interviews and spotlights in the industry.
Along with the new redesign of the magazine, I would like to congratulate our new ACAMS Today Editorial Committee (EC) Chair Elaine Yancey. We are pleased to have her at the helm leading our talented subject-matter experts who sit on the EC. If you have not done so, I would encourage you to read Elaine’s interview on acamstoday.org.
I hope the articles in this magazine will assist and inspire us all to be ever vigilant in combating financial crime and encourage us to share our knowledge with our anti-financial crime network.