Insight

Adaptability: An overlooked, and underrated, compliance skill


This Insight article explores the importance of adaptability as a soft skill for compliance professionals, focusing on the different types of adaptability skills, the reasons why adaptability is so important for compliance professionals and the ways in which to improve upon your adaptability.....More

Risk, Compliance and Cultural Change Series


This series on culture change will demonstrate how studying human behaviour can help alleviate some of the challenges of our profession, helping you, your colleagues and your firm.

How compliance can help prevent human trafficking


30th July is the United Nations World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, this article will look at what compliance professionals can do to help prevent this awful activity from happening....More

Managing Risk More Effectively Through Intelligent Automation


Download this e-book to learn the way forward of bridging the current knowledge gap and how to equip compliance teams with the automation tools they need to be fully prepared.

The smartest guys in the room – how to deal with cultural arrogance


Arrogance is an unpleasant trait to deal with in our career. It is, however, everywhere. Learning how and when to face it will be a long-term useful skill.....More

Man and woman talking at work

Mind your language


Words matter, as risk and compliance professionals it is vital that this is understood and acted upon. A misunderstanding can lead to a costly mistake so by understanding the nuances of language you can be better placed to communicate well with colleagues and stakeholders.

Financial crime within the metaverse


Criminals are always early adopters of new technology; it is up to compliance to ensure they do not gain a foothold in the metaverse.....More

Transaction monitoring: its importance and how you can do better


Ahead of the imminent launch of a new virtual classroom workshop, we are taking a look at transaction monitoring: what it is, what risks to look out for and how we can learn from examples of poor monitoring activity.

Thumbs down: Fraud and social media


This Insight article focuses on the impact social media has had on the way fraudsters target their victims.....More

The importance of maintenance and record-keeping


This insight article looks at the importance of maintenance and record-keeping as part of an effective GRC programme.

Factors to consider when implementing risk assessment technology


This Insight article focuses on the factors that compliance professionals must consider when implementing risk assessment technology.....More

FedEx Series Part 1: Desire for transparency launches FedEx on ESG journey


Behind its white trucks and the orange and purple of its iconic logo, FedEx Corp. has built its enterprise on an absolute commitment to ethics, integrity, and reliability. This principle is the bedrock of its long-term success in environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance.

Why beneficial ownership is crucial in supporting current sanctions


Understanding who the owners of a company are is a key tool in fighting financial crime and potential sanctions evasion.....More

The dangers of money laundering within the art market


The value of the global art market has reached $67.4 billion so it is unsurprising that criminals have targeted it. Through understanding it’s vulnerabilities and what legislation is in place, compliance officers can help to prevent potential money laundering from happening.

Managing Correspondent Banking Relationships


Correspondent banking serves a vital function within the global economy. However, if correspondent banking relationships are not managed properly, they can present considerable risks from an anti-financial crime perspective. This article will review a recent ICA Webinar that discussed some of these challenges and how to make these relationships a success.....More

Your questions, answered: Russia sanctions FAQs.


As governments continue to issue sanctions in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, many firms are looking to limit their sanctions exposure. Our Russia sanctions FAQs consider the ways in which this can be achieved, as well as addressing some of the more complex demands placed on firms with Russian exposure.

5 considerations for a Transaction Monitoring system


Transaction Monitoring is an area that is constantly in the spotlight. The challenge for a financial institution is to get the balance right of monitoring the accounts of those individuals who are up to no good, but without impacting on the transaction flow of those who are innocent.....More

NFTs: the future, a craze or a risky business?


This Insight article focuses on the recent surge in popularity of NFTs, specifically detailing what NFTs are, the risks associated with them and what the future holds for the technology.

Greenwashing under the spotlight


With growing concerns over greenwashing, regulators are placing greater scrutiny on organisations’ claims about their green credentials.....More

Where are we heading with ESG?


ESG is climbing up the corporate agenda and in this piece, Rhodri Kettle takes a look at some of the reasons why this is the case and then poses some indicators to look out for to assess the acceptance of ESG within your own firms.

Learning points from the HSBC fine – practical steps businesses can take


HSBC received a hefty fine by the FCA and their decision notice highlighted three areas with deficiencies related to systems and controls. This article will explore the decision notice and look at what lessons other firms can glean to help their own risk-based approaches.....More

Russia sanctions surgery - what are the implications for your business?


As the terrible conflict in Ukraine intensifies, sanctions are making global headlines. This public and media interest has brought with it fresh challenges for those trying to keep pace with the complex measures imposed by governments on entities linked to the Russian state. In response, an ICA webinar on 9 March sought to bring some clarity to the new sanctions landscape.

The big crypto conversation - MENA conference


The regulation of virtual assets will be high on the agenda at ICA Live: MENA, with a current and a former regulator driving the conversation.....More

Red flags for illegal wildlife trafficking


Identifying red flags in any form of transaction monitoring of customer activity is a key part of spotting and stopping criminal activity. This is crucial in trying to prevent the illegal trade of wildlife and this piece will highlight some of these red flags and discuss the important of good quality reporting when they are identified.

5 tips for handling SoF/SoW


Holly Thomas-Wrightson helps us to understand the complexities of source of funds and source of wealth.....More

How to help prevent the illegal wildlife trade


Illegal wildlife trafficking has been described as a low-risk, high-reward crime that is thought to be worth a huge £17 billion a year. It’s widely accepted that this is an awful, illegal industry but there is still some debate and struggle with how to prevent it. By identifying key touch points across the supply chain and targeting those that seek to profit from it there is the potential to save millions of animals across the world. This approach, combined with increased legislation and support from regulators could be the difference between this illegal industry thriving or ceasing to exist.

ESG perspectives: implications for compliance professionals


Environmental, social and governance (ESG) is a broad topic formed of diverse and often fascinating issues. We are therefore pleased to present this unmissable collection of perspectives on ESG from compliance professionals all over the world....More

Raising awareness of the illegal wildlife trade


Illegal wildlife trafficking has grown in its severity and occurrence in recent years. This article looks at how this has happened and the importance of building a solid criminal case against those that carry it out. Changing the behaviour of the consumer is a significant factor in the overall effort against the illegal wildlife trade and this article plays a large part in helping readings to understand the importance of this.

Happy Valentine’s Day – or is it?


Romance fraud is a crime that often avoids the headlines when compared to tax or credit card fraud, but it is on the rise and can leave victims with not just a loss of money but can also be a big hit to their self-esteem, if not very emotionally damaging. This piece will look at how it happens, how people can protect themselves and also what to do if you or someone you know has been a victim.....More

Zeroing in: Making the transition to net zero


Achieving ‘net zero’ emissions has become a huge priority for everyone as the urgency of the climate crises grows year on year. Tackling this is a serious challenge and at the recent COP26 summit, plans were announced to make the UK ‘the world’s first net-zero aligned financial centre’. This piece will look at how banks can plot their way along this journey and increase their confidence at hitting these important targets.

CPI 2021: Looking beyond a high score


The release of Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is always a significant event in the financial crime compliance calendar, compiling as it does a ranking of perceived corruption across countries around the globe. This year's index will make interesting, if dispiriting, reading for compliance professionals, and this piece argues of the need to look beyond the CPI to inform their own judgements based on curiosity and looking beyond the obvious.....More

UN International Day of Education – the changing face of learning


Since 2001, ICA has been committed to increasing the knowledge and skills of regulatory and financial crime compliance professionals around the world. On this special day, we are marking the UN International Day of Education with a look at how we have successfully tailored our deliverables to harness developments in technology and continue to give our students an outstanding learner experience.

A 2022 Compliance Wish List


This article recaps some of the developments we would like to see in the compliance world in the upcoming year....More

What it takes to work in sanctions compliance – Part 2


This article is the second in our series on sanctions: What it takes to work in sanctions compliance

Pandora Papers - How to identify ultimate beneficial owners


The Pandora Papers were another massive story in 2021 as a group of journalists released a paper that highlighted the issue of UBOs. This have us a chance to reflect on the European regulatory landscape and best practice examples for financial institutions to enhance their systems and controls for preventing financial crime.....More

Top 5 e-books that our members have enjoyed in 2021


Cybersecurity, financial crime compliance trends, integrated risk management and governance, risk and compliance were among the key topics that attracted our members' interest in 2021

3 major talking points from 2021 for the compliance industry


With 2021 quickly drawing to a close, now seems an apposite time to reflect on the last 12 months....More

EU Whistle-blowing regulations: the right questions to ask in and outside Europe


The deadline for Member States, to transpose the EU Whistleblower Protection Directive into national laws, is 17th Dec 2021

SARs reporting in the service sector


Why is the number of SARs being raised in the service sector so low when compared to credit institutions, like banks?....More

Old crimes, new methods


Times and technology may change, but the fundamental means by which criminals attempt to launder money and carry out their nefarious acts are still rooted in the same criminal process – commit a crime, evade capture and benefit from the proceeds.

Why study with ICA?


Have you decided it’s time to progress your career and that a professional qualification is the perfect way to enhance your knowledge and skills?....More

Compliance must carve out role in company ESG efforts


Respondents to Compliance Week's “Inside the Mind of the CCO” survey agree compliance should play a key part as businesses determine their ESG strategy—either through primary oversight or meaningful participation

Why I loved being an MLRO


Being an MLRO can be tough, but it is also exciting and fulfilling with many opportunities for personal and professional development....More

Compliance must be a force for good


Ethics and purpose should underpin every effort to meet the challenge of climate change, writes James Thomas

What it takes to work in sanctions compliance


Sanctions impact almost every aspect of our lives, and is one of the few topics with real, day-to-day significance....More

The journey toward integrated risk management


Discover four practical steps to realising the gains of IRM

Putting the ‘G’ into GRC


Governance plays a significant role in determining how a business’ objectives are set and achieved, how risk is monitored and addressed, and how performance is optimised.....More

Suex sanctions: the compliance implications


Deepa Chandrasekhar considers the significance of the recent OFAC decision to sanction cryptocurrency exchange Suex

Ethics Masterclass: A Plantation Adventure


In this four-part series, Dr. Kara Tan Bhala will guide you each week through a case study taken from her book, Ethics in Finance: Case Studies of a Woman’s Life on Wall Street.....More

Counterfeiting, Covid and Conscience


Are you inadvertently contributing to criminality? As we acclimatise to the ‘new normal’, we examine how the global pandemic has helped facilitate unprecedented growth in the UK’s counterfeit market and how compliance professionals utilise their skills to combat it.

A milestone case in Singapore: Failing to perform KYC/CDD & false statements


Proper due diligence work is very important; so important, that it is vital it isn’t undermined in practice by banking and finance professionals, nor by the firms in which they work.....More

Nord Stream 2: A study in sanctions complexity


The political fallout has been described as ‘the biggest diplomatic crisis in transatlantic relations since the Iraq War

Why compliance needs to talk about sustainability


Recently, we conducted a poll of ICA members and the wider compliance community on sustainability and the role compliance has in addressing it. The results were not only revealing, but pointed to a potential new direction for compliance as its responsibilities expand.....More

Whistle-blowing: Good apples, bad apples and behavioural science


This blog series will explore sensitive questions around whistleblowing. It will consider the social and individual processes that surround deviant corporate behaviour and why these are strong barriers to ‘speaking up’. It will also ask how we can bring those barriers down. A field operation plan for whistle-blowers will also be built, sharing techniques that individuals can adopt to assist them in the face of corporate misdemeanours.

What every compliance professional needs to know


Why every compliance professional needs to know how to protect customers’ monies and assets – and why they should encourage others to do the same.....More

6 ways to mitigate a bad day at the office


Throughout this mini-series, we have explored how compliance faces unprecedented challenges and exciting new opportunities in our rapidly changing, digitising world.

5 tips to help you file more effective SARs


What could you be doing to file more effective suspicious activity reports (SARs)?....More

Are companies ready to trust artificial intelligence?


A recent roundtable, sponsored by Wolters Kluwer and organised by ICA, looked at the importance of balancing machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) with human intelligence and intervention.

Effective AML training: four questions to answer


Ensuring your employees are adequately trained in anti money laundering (AML) is a crucial component of managing financial crime risk. Not only is it vital to protect your firm, but its often required by regulations.....More

Has human trafficking grown during the pandemic?


Many aspects of life over the last year have stagnated as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the virus grinding whole countries and economies to a halt. However, one thing that defied the slowdown – depressingly – was the number of human trafficking victims.

The importance of transaction monitoring – and the cost of getting it wrong


In this week’s #ICAInsight, Teodora Harrop considers what can be learnt from recent enforcement action and provides best practice examples from which firms can learn.....More

The qualities demanded of a GRC professional


An effective GRC practitioner must face problems rather than avoid them, hold to principles when it is easier to dodge them and challenge commonly accepted beliefs when needed. What psychological research tells us is that these qualities do not come naturally to us as humans.

Who will be suited to compliance roles in the 2020s?


We are already seeing signs that the 2020s will be vastly different from the 2010s and unrecognisable in many ways from, say, the 1980s. Back then, a ‘job for life’ was a reality and a career within a single profession or trade, perhaps even with the same employer was common place. These days, rather than seek a job for life, Generation Z are more likely to question how they can leverage their value now and start their own business or, at least, a side hustle. This article will explore these differences and look at how compliance could be reimagined in the future and who is best suited for a role within this burgeoning industry.....More

How firms can protect vulnerable customers


Recent research from the FCA revealed that, by October 2020, 27.7 million adults (53%) possessed some characteristics of vulnerability

Roundtable highlights: best practice in risk assessment   


A recent roundtable on best practice for risk assessment, sponsored by OneTrust and organised by ICA, uncovered some fascinating insight from those on the front line of compliance.....More

5 reasons why your employer should sponsor you to do an ICA qualification


Many employers all over the world recognise the value of ICA qualifications in increasing the confidence and ability of their staff

Are compliance officers good board material?


Outside of our profession, a common frame of reference for compliance is the historical context of enforcing rules and regulations....More

5 reasons to sponsor an employee’s ICA qualification


Here are five reasons that funding a course for your employee can be a wise investment

Financial Crime: A Global Perspective


A fascinating collection of global industry insights on current and emerging trends, challenges and opportunities in 2021 and beyond....More

Can you really help stop wildlife trafficking?


Wildlife trafficking is a big issue. We’re not just talking about endangered animals from Africa being poached and sold on the black market. There are many other ways that wildlife trafficking can be a part of your life, without you even realising it.

How global compliance works at the local level


This insight article will consider what global compliance looks like at a local level. It will also examine how different regions understand and adapt definitions of compliance to their own purposes, and the consequences of this for businesses.....More

Take part in ICA's sanctions risk survey


Share your input into a short survey about your organisation’s approach to sanctions control

Can a compliance team change a culture?


Compliance teams need to think and act more holistically, strategically and embrace innovation – to ‘design in’ rather than ‘bolt on.’ It’s vital they play their part in unlocking synergy and adopt a mindset that values reflection.....More

BIG Compliance Festival 2021 - Highlights


The 2021 edition of the BIG Compliance Festival, the biggest event for compliance professionals globally, attracted over 650 participants from 82 countries worldwide. Attendees enjoyed an array of insightful presentations on a variety of topics. Below we present a summary of some of the event’s highlights and key takeaways from the discussions that took place.

Why curiosity is important for compliance professionals


Curiosity is not often seen as an attractive trait: as the saying goes ‘curiosity killed the cat’. But for compliance professionals, I would argue that it is a key skill we need to improve both personally and professionally, and in order to protect our firms from risk.....More

Combating terrorist financing: Coordination and the ‘human element’


The nexus between transnational organised crime and terrorist financing is a contentious, ongoing topic of debate. The extent of their connection is disputed, but what is accepted is that the motivation and ideology of a terrorist differs fundamentally from that of organised criminal groups.

Sanctions are constantly changing. Here’s what firms can do.


Over the last five years, there has been a significant shift in the sanctions world, from traditional jurisdictional and list-based sanctions to those that are more nuanced and thematic.....More

You’ve got your ICA qualification - what happens now?


The key steps you can take to maximise the potential for professional success that your ICA qualification offers.

Is compliance staying the same in a rapidly changing digital world?


In a rapidly changing digital world, thinking around compliance needs reframing. The question today is whether compliance can keep up in world moving faster than any had thought possible....More

ICA's Monthly News Chat: episode 1


We are pleased to announce the launch of ICA’s Monthly News Chat, a brief and informative video series, providing a rundown of key topics trending that month.

Bonuses and bias: the risks of variable pay for compliance professionals


When a compliance professional perceives their pay package may be reduced as a result of their actions, there is a risk of biased decisions....More

Anti-corruption developments in 2020: China, India make strides


A global panel of experts with law firm Gibson Dunn share insights around recent anti-corruption developments in some of the world’s largest regions, including China, India, Latin America, and Africa.

Keeping pace with the latest AI trends


What challenges and opportunities does artificial intelligence present and how can risk and compliance practitioners best respond to these? James Thomas reports on recent ICA Roundtable events....More

Identity Fraud Report 2020


In this report, Onfido analyses data from its roster of global clients to understand where current and future risk lies

Compliance training – the real value and benefit to the modern compliance professional


What is the real value and benefit of training to the modern compliance professional?....More

[Video] All you need to know about 6AMLD


In this video, James Wood-Rickett, Course Director, Global Lead - Anti Money Laundering, ICA, considers the key changes of 6AMLD.

UK sanctions – under new management


The UK has completed the process of leaving the European Union. This article is a follow up to a previous piece where the complicated relationship between sanctions and the UK’s transition from the EU was assessed. Here we will look at the reality of post-transition UK sanctions and the new sanctions landscape in the UK.....More

Breaking barriers: Advancing diversity and inclusion in the compliance world


As a global organisation, we understand that diversity and inclusion is different around the world - the challenges faced by different groups vary significantly.

Compliance, bias and illogical decision-making


Most people understand and accept that human decision-making is tainted by bias. But what is less well-understood is how these human biases can creep into technology intended to streamline, improve or make fairer decisions made by machines.....More

The role of HR in driving diversity and inclusion


What is the role of the HR function in driving D&I, and the importance of compliance management in overseeing changes in organisational behaviour and practices?

COVID-19, cryptocurrencies and fraud


James Thomas considers fraud risks associated with cryptocurrencies in the context of COVID-19....More

A year to remember


2020 has been a year that most of us would gladly forget. Nevertheless, as we look towards 2021, it is worth considering the lessons learned over the last 12 months, assessing the evolving landscape, and (where possible) drawing on any positives that have come to light. This article considers some of the main features of fraud in 2020 and highlights potential trends for the coming year.

The growing demand for investigations skills


As the compliance world continues to evolve and the number of internal investigations increases, the skillsets needed by compliance staff are changing. This article discusses some of the reasons behind the growth in investigations, how compliance skills are evolving as a response, and the rising importance of technology-based investigation knowledge.....More

[E-book] Machine learning for governance


How security, risk management, compliance, and audit professionals can start using this evolving technology in everyday activities

[E-book] Training with impact – using immersive scenarios in your financial crime training


This e-book considers 5 questions that can help when designing immersive scenarios for your team, from understanding the audience to creating scenarios that full realistic and resonate with learners.....More

Cryptocurrency is complicated – but it’s not going away


Cryptocurrency has burst front and center onto the world stage, and we all need to better understand it and the technology behind it. This article will illustrate some of the challenges, even mysteries, of cryptocurrency and highlight the importance of everyone in compliance staying on top of it all.

BIG Compliance Festival 2020 – Part 2 highlights


A summary of part two of the Big Compliance Festival with highlights and key points from the sessions.....More

Working together to stop money laundering


FATF President, Dr Marcus Pleyer, shared a vision for the future of AML at ICA’s BIG Compliance Festival

Is human trafficking financial services’ blind spot?


It is generally acknowledged that great strides forward have been made over the last decade in the fight against money laundering and financial crime. Few, however, would claim that there remains little to be done. But a remarkable new report by BAE Systems demonstrates just how far we have to go.....More

Ask a CCO: Compliance’s role in D&I efforts


We asked nine prominent chief compliance officers what they can do or are doing to create a more progressive workplace.

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