Our Award winning SmartSearch platform is the first system to bring together both Business and Individual AML Verification on a single platform. This means you can discharge your AML and KYC verification obligations in a fast and cost effective manner. The whole AML verification process is intuitive and very easy to use, there is no need for clients to supply their documents and the whole process is executed in less than 3 minutes for a business check and less than 30 seconds for an Individual check. The output is an easy to understand electronic AML Certificate which can be stored in your case management system or your own client file area within SmartSearch, for future reference.
SmartSearch complies with the latest Anti-money Laundering Regulations 2007 and the Guidance Notes laid down by the Joint Money Laundering Steering Group (JMLSG), the Law Society, the Institute of Chartered Accountants England and Wales (ICAEW), the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC). In addition our systems comply with the Know Your Customer (KYC) and Customer Due Diligence (CDD) requirements and guidance from the aforementioned Regulatory Bodies.
Our data partnership with Experian provides us with access to the deepest and broadest data sources available. We have the ability to reference over one billion records to complete our verification processes in the UK Market, along with comprehensive data coverage in most International Markets. SmartSearch enjoys the highest match and pass rates in this marketplace, typical “match rates” are circa 97% with “pass rates” of circa 95% achieved on average. This means that in the vast majority of cases you can quickly and easily verify the identity of your clients without the need to see any documentation.
Our data relationship with Dow Jones enables SmartSearch to perform the most comprehensive Sanction and PEP screening, the Dow Jones “Watch List” provides over 1,100 different sanction data sources. We update this major database daily enabling SmartSearch to provide you with a daily monitoring service along with an MLRO Alerts service and an Automated Enhanced Due Diligence service.
SmartSearch provides each Client with a full online audit trail of all AML checks performed and the detail of their outcome; this information is easily retrievable for internal review, client investigation and compliance audits. If you have challenges with internal IT development, then SmartSearch can host all of the outcome search histories or alternatively these can be saved with your case management systems.
The positive verification processes are performed on businesses and individuals, the business checks seek to verify the Company, Shareholders and Directors including any Beneficial Owners. The company checks confirm the entity is bona fide using the Companies House Database and other supplementary sources for Unincorporated Businesses. Shareholder listings are reviewed to identify the presence of Beneficial Owners and these can also be verified subject to your risk policy. The final part of this process is the selection of the chosen Directors to be the subject of AML verification; this again will be dependent on your risk policy. Having chosen the data subjects to be verified SmartSearch will then find and retrieve the Directors or Partner's home address details eradicating the need for documents to be provided. The SmartSearch individual AML verification process will then be activated as follows.
SmartSearch verifies individuals by accessing up to 1 billion data items to confirm an individual’s identity electronically. The minimum match levels in line with the JMLSG will be one name and one address match along with a second name and address or date of birth match from two independent data sources. Again this level of matching will depend on your own risk policy, typical risk protocols for a face-to-face meeting will require two independent proofs of identity as above and for a non face-to-face meeting this will increase to three proofs of identity dependant on the risk level of the product or service. SmartSearch will on average deliver back 6.2 matched data items to confirm an individual identity.
The outcome of the aforementioned processes is an electronic AML Certificate that will satisfy all the Regulatory Bodies compliance requirements.
The Dow Jones “Watch List” provides the data sources for the negative screening of Sanctions and PEPs. This data source is compiled from over 1,100 independent data sources to provide the most comprehensive database source of Sanction and PEP information. This database is updated daily and rebuilt at the end of each month to ensure optimum performance and accuracy.
We also have the ability to screen for SIPs (Special Interest Persons) and RCAs (Relatives and Close Associates), this option can be activated if your risk policy requires these checks to be done.
Another unique feature of SmartSearch is its ability to monitor on a daily basis any changes in the Sanction status of your clients. Where a changed circumstance is found the system will activate an email alert to the MLRO or their appointed Deputy MLRO to inform them that a Sanction “hit” has occurred, they can then take the appropriate action.
Sanction alerts occur on approximately 3% to 5% of occasion’s dependant on your client demographic, in the vast majority of cases these invariably turn out to be “false positives”. Enhanced Due Diligence has to be performed to confirm that these are indeed false positives and that the client relationship can continue.
These alerts whilst small in number are also very time consuming which is why we developed the AEDD process, this will confirm the Sanction match to be a “False Positive”, saving significant time and money.
On the rare occasions where a Sanctions match is not a false positive, the AEDD process will collate all the appropriate biography, adverse media and photographic evidence for you to review this in detail, greatly reducing the amount of time required to complete your Enhanced Due Diligence prior to submitting your SAR (Suspicious Activity Report) to SOCA (Serious Organised Crime Agency).
There are still many businesses that continue to use Certified Documents as their primary means of complying with Anti-Money Laundering Regulations. This type of manual verification is expensive, time consuming and inconvenient for both clients and companies alike.
There are also many pitfalls to avoid when using documents as your sole or primary means of verification. Companies who use documents for verification will find it more difficult and costly to verify their customers against UN, US and HM Treasury Sanctions Warning lists and PEP lists. Retrieving documents for Regulatory Visits/Audits will not be easy and repeat AML verification is almost impossible to execute. The following table illustrates some of the obvious difficulties.
Pros & Cons of Documents v/s Electronic Verification
|Convenient for client & firm||No||Yes|
|Requires action from the client||Yes||No|
|Remote transactions made easy and no delays||No||Yes|
|Zero exposure to fraudulent identities||No||Yes|
|Embarrassment risk of lost client documents||Yes||No|
|Includes UN, US & HM Treasury Sanctions check||No||Yes|
|Includes Politically Exposed Persons check||No||Yes|
|Includes Terrorist checks||No||Yes|
|Negligible cost of document archive & retrieval||No||Yes|
|Rechargeable in fees back to client||No||Yes|
|Overall cost comparison per check||High||Low|
There are serious hidden dangers in Document Verification, to date all known cases of mortgage fraud have been down to forged documents, conversely there has been no known cases of electronic fraud.
Changing from document verification to electronic verification is easy and the benefits are clear, we can set your businesses up with operational access to SmartSearch within 24-48 hours