SmartSearch comments on arrest of Europe’s biggest money launderer

As Europol announce the arrest of one of Europe’s biggest money launderers, we have a comment from Martin Cheek, managing director of SmartSearch, a leading UK provider of anti-money laundering software.

Martin said: “The high-profile arrest of one of Europe’s biggest money launderers – responsible for laundering over 200 million euros, clearly demonstrates the determination of authorities all across Europe to crack down on serious fraud and financial crime.

“But while this is a huge win, there’s still plenty of work to do and businesses need to remain vigilant to this very real threat. The UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) estimates as much as £90 billion is being laundered in the UK, so in order to protect themselves, firms must respond and increase the levels of their checks and procedures.

“As the landscape continues to change and criminals find more innovative ways to filter money, that means ditching the manual paper checks of the past. As few people can spot fake documents, manual checks of passports and driving licences just aren’t robust enough, so it’s imperative that companies switch to digital onboarding and electronic verification (EV).

“EV checks are not only more thorough, but they take only minutes to do. Then with enhanced due diligence, detailed monitoring, robust checks and sanction screening, businesses can best protect themselves from fraud and serious financial crime while clearly demonstrating a compliant culture – a key requirement of many regulators.”