I have recently found myself with time on my hands, as have we all during the COVID-19 pandemic. While checking my social media feed, I came across an article by National Geographic that caught my eye for two reasons. The article was about the plight of the northern white rhinoceros, an incredibly endangered species. There is hope on the horizon through artificial insemination of the few remaining rhinos to try and increase both pregnancies and the birth rate with the end goal being the repopulation of the species. The first reason this article caught my attention is because it is something my father would love. He is a lover of science, education and has a strong affinity for nature programs on TV. As a child, I would often ask him questions about animals and he always had the answer. He would even tell me additional facts about the animal of my query. I was amazed by his breadth of knowledge. It was then that I discovered his secret—he was an avid watcher of ‘Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom’, a weekly nature show. I soon joined him in his weekly viewing.
The second reason I was interested in this article was the plethora of factors for the low number of northern white rhinos remaining. Among these is that illegal poaching is rampant. The cover article in the second ACAMS Today Europe edition explores the illegal animal trade and its lesser known financial component in Wildlife: the underreported illegal trade. Realizing that these crimes are intricately linked to financial markets is of supreme importance for financial crime prevention professionals. Awareness of the economic aspects of illegal trafficking is key when combatting the crime of wildlife trafficking.
This edition also includes articles about Europe’s free trade zones, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), machine learning, borderless cryptocurrency and articles exclusively in English, French and German.
As global citizens we are all experiencing disruptions, unforeseen challenges and uncertainty, but at the same time we are experiencing the best of human nature as we all do our part to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and bear witness to the unselfish heroes on the front lines who are helping those in need.
Lastly, take some time to catch up on your favorite nature program and I hope you are all safe and healthy.