Pushing AML beyond the human element – TruNarrative interview

Tuesday 7 June 2022 10:12 CET | Editor: Vlad Macovei | Interview

TruNarrative’s Luke Ashley sat down with The Paypers to give us insights into the world of AML compliance, how is it influenced by regulation, and how can technology help improve things.

What is the status of AML compliance in the UK and Europe and how does regulation influence this field?

AML compliance is almost an industry in itself, costing businesses significant resources as regulation becomes more and more complex. This is apparent in the UK, Europe, and businesses that operate in multiple jurisdictions with different AML regulations. Historically, issues like this have been approached by an increased headcount, companies often ‘throwing people’ at the issue. Many firms, especially those that are scaling rapidly, should look to adapt their technology to address these complex challenges.

Our parent company, LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, carried out research on the cost of compliance, which looked into this further. They found that over half of AML compliance budgets are spent on routine customer due diligence (CDD). CDD was by far the most costly and time-consuming process in the sample, accounting for 53% of overall AML compliance costs. Together with investigations, it accounted for two-thirds of costs.

One lending bank compared the influence of regulation to ‘turning a super-tanker around’ when embedded processes need to be changed. And we haven’t even mentioned the potential fines yet…


What are the main trends in financial services? Which are the most encountered challenges companies face when they must comply with AML regulation?

As lots of customer acquisitions are now being done digitally, there's no human interaction, and that does potentially increase the risk of fraud. Based on discussions we’ve had, the 4 main trends (or, challenges) are: adhering to a constantly expanding set of regulatory requirements, ensuring customers are who they say they are, protecting against fraud, and ensuring monitoring continues throughout the customer lifecycle. Facing these with a ‘digital first’ approach appears to be on everyone’s agenda.

Companies want to implement agile technology to ensure compliance with current and future AML regulation. This includes customer journeys with adaptable processes, making sure their customers are authorised and authenticated appropriately, with an eye to future-proof for longevity, adaptability for quick customisation and swift integration. It’s a big challenge.


How important is the people-related component in the workings of AML compliance and what can be done to foster innovation in the field? Should the focus shift to technology instead of people?

As much as we love automation, there will always need to be a human element. In both designing complaint low-friction customer journeys, and in dealing with manual referrals.

Some firms are reportedly taking more than 20 hours to remediate even standard risk customers – which in 90% of cases, turn out to be false positives. This is in line with the findings of our research, which showed a typical KYC remediation case took on average 18 hours across 3.7 staff members to complete.

The headline is ‘balancing the need for a frictionless customer journey with the need for robust customer due diligence.’

Firms are successfully investing in their tech stacks, this having a positive effect on their ability to effectively risk-assess their customers and delivering a better customer experience. Not only that, but there’s a knock-on effect – a reduction in the entire compliance time and cost commitment, enabling compliance teams to manage risk and maintain compliance.


What is TruNarrative’s mission and what can the company do to help financial services firms be better prepared?

TruNarrative provides a market-leading combination of data, technology, and expertise.

Our orchestration platform allows businesses to build their entire onboarding and transaction monitoring processes onto a single platform, helping balance frictionless customer onboarding. Through a single API integration, our customers get access to 50+ industry-leading data and document providers to enable them to build workflows with fraud protection, customer experience, and regulatory requirements at heart.

The take-home message for us is ‘platforms, software, and machines will never replace humans, but they can certainly support them.’


What is in store for TruNarrative in the near future?

Following our acquisition by LexisNexis Risk Solutions, we now have access to more data sources and can enhance the experience for our existing customers. With that, we are going through a rebrand, and our platform shall now be known as the LexisNexis® RiskNarrative™ platform. It’s a really exciting time and we’re looking forward to helping more firms, both in the UK and abroad.

About Luke Ashley

Since university, Luke has been involved in helping to grow KYC, AML, and identity technology businesses. Luke heads up TruNarrative's FX, trading, investment, and charity sectors. He cites the best part of his job is meeting new people and businesses that have a real challenge TruNarrative can help with... or rambling about swimming, cycling, and running.

About TruNarrative

TruNarrative was founded in 2016 with a single mission: make safe commerce simple. TruNarrative was acquired by LexisNexis Risk Solutions in 2021 and continues to deliver their intuitive no-code platform which transforms fraud management, reduces risk, and streamlines KYC and AML processes. TruNarrative assists ambitious companies of all sizes from across the banking, lending, financial services, betting, payments, and ecommerce industries. For more information, please visit our site.

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Keywords: TruNarrative, AML, compliance, regulation, LexisNexis, digitalisation
Categories: Fraud & Financial Crime
Companies: TruNarrative
Countries: Europe, United Kingdom
This article is part of category

Fraud & Financial Crime


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