70% accountants and lawyers have money laundering fears over Russian dark funds
• Survey reveals only 45% are completely confident in their current anti-money laundering procedures
• 76% believe the threat of money laundering will worsen over the next three years
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM 25th MAY, 2022: 70% of accountants and lawyers are more concerned about money laundering since Russian events and sanctions began, with 75% moving anti-money laundering (AML) up the company agenda in the past year. That’s according to First AML, the end-to-end AML software solution, which surveyed 200 accountants and lawyers in the UK to discover attitudes toward current compliance and AML procedures.
Despite 53% of respondents having identified an instance of suspected money laundering in the past three years (with 24% identifying more than one) only 45% are completely confident in their AML procedures. Alongside this, a staggering 91% think companies need to embrace online technologies to aid compliance with AML regulations. Likewise, 87% respondents are putting more rigid policies in place to be compliant and meet AML regulations.
The core reason for money laundering rising up company agendas is a focus on customer transparency and ethical customer onboarding (68%). This was closely followed by external risks (50%), such as the situation in Russia and people traffickers, and increased risks of fines (46%). Worryingly, 76% of respondents believe the threat will continue to get worse over the next three years.
To deal with the growing threat of money laundering, 80% of respondents reported that they are turning to technology to become more compliant, while 53% said they were turning to outsourcing services and 28% turning to hiring.
Simon Luke, UK Country Manager commented: “Even before the Ukrainian conflict and Russian sanctions, the UK has been recognised as a hub for Russian money-laundering. Accountants and lawyers need quick, easy and accurate ways to onboard customers and complete financial transactions without fear. However, this is an industry wide issue that impacts not just businesses but also the economy and everyday Britons. That’s where First AML’s technology comes in, especially as countries globally call for tighter compliance in business.”
When asked what the main causes for concern were, the growth in online transactions (38%) was the most common answer. This was followed by the growth of unethical business practices (23%) and the Russian situation (18%).
To learn more about First AML, visit the website here: https://www.firstaml.com/