Lawyers and compliance professionals have a challenging responsibility of safeguarding their law firms against money laundering and financial crimes. With the rise of complex financial and identity fraud, it is crucial for Lawyers, COLP and MLRO to leverage technology to prevent and identify such criminal activities. AML providers play a crucial role in preventing, identifying, and verifying businesses and individuals worldwide through a process known as Know Your Business (KYB) and Know Your Client (KYC).
Choosing the right AML provider is essential, given the vast number of products available in the market.
Regulations governing professionals in the legal and property sectors require checks to take place. The law on Money Laundering mandates accurate verification of clients and their source of funds. Therefore, selecting the right AML provider becomes a crucial step towards compliance. This guide highlights what to look for when selecting an AML provider that aligns with your firm’s needs and budget.
By considering the factors mentioned below, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your firm’s needs and budget. Remember, AML compliance is not a one-time activity, and you need to ensure that your chosen software provider can support your compliance efforts in the long run.
More than a ‘tick box’ exercise
It is crucial to recognize that AML procedures go beyond just checking boxes. They must be robust and impenetrable to prevent money laundering effectively. The aim for a law firm should be to adopt a knowledge-based solution which has shaped the technology to make it more difficult for illicit financial activities to take place. Recently, pioneering systems have emerged that can authenticate individuals through dynamic real-time facial biometric verification and connect directly to client’s financial information carrying out analysis and reports in seconds. This new wave of technology is providing lawyers with a level of financial insight and regulatory compliance that was previously unattainable but also goes one step further when providing data and KYC insights.
Compliance at the core
When choosing a AML provider, naturally compliance will be front of mind however not all software providers have the core framework required to ensure compliance for your firm. For example, due to the inherent high level of risk in conveyancing, Her Majesty’s Land Registry (HMLR) in conjunction with the Law Society and the Solicitors Regulation Authority produced a set of guidelines for digital verifications in the form of a “Digital ID Standard.” The standard includes biometric and cryptographic elements in the verification process to ensure the legitimacy of the individual. Conveyancers who follow the standard can gain “Safe Harbour” status, meaning that the Land Registry would not seek recourse against the conveyancer in the event their client was not who they claimed to be. Even where there is no conveyancing taking place, the level of accuracy and certainty that such a check can provide is invaluable to any law firm or professional. This is a prime example of why choosing a provider with ‘compliance at its core’ is important and how it can help to reduce the risk of identity fraud and money laundering, which are major concerns for the legal industry.
Customisation and ease of use
Performing due diligence is a crucial yet challenging task. It’s vital to ensure that the AML compliance software platform you choose is user-friendly and streamlined for maximum efficiency. However, since no two law firms are the same, the solution you pick must be customisable to meet your firm’s unique needs while also taking your clients’ risks into account. Customisation options should include adding specific enhanced compliance checks or reports, automating compliance workflows, and integrating with other software’s, among other things such as lite checks, adverse media checks and electronic address checks.
In addition to comprehensive identity verification, there are several other things to look for in an AML provider. For example, check whether the provider is using Open Banking to verify source of funds and source of wealth. Also, ensure that the provider offers ongoing monitoring for global sanctions screening. It’s crucial to choose an AML provider that is easy to use for your clients. Opting for an AML provider that provides both client ease-of-use and customisable options for your firm is the smartest choice.
When choosing an AML compliance software provider, it’s essential to prioritise the availability of customer support, training, and maintenance services. A provider that offers these services can help ensure that your team is effectively trained on the platform and that any technical issues are resolved in a timely manner.
To identify a provider that offers excellent customer support, start by checking their reputation in the industry. Look for reviews, testimonials, and case studies from other law firms or compliance professionals who have used their services. This will give you a good indication of their track record in providing quality customer support.
Additionally, you may want to assess the level of training and support that the provider offers. How do they roll out the system. Do they provide initial training on how to use the platform, and is ongoing training available for new features or updates? Do they offer a dedicated support team that can assist you with technical issues?
Consider the maintenance services that the provider offers. Is there a guarantee that the software will remain up to date with changing AML regulations and requirements? Are updates and fixes rolled out in a timely manner? These are all essential questions to ask when choosing an AML compliance software provider that offers the best possible support for your firm.
Verify 365 is the ultimate solution for lawyers and property professionals looking for an AML compliance software provider. Our platform is designed to meet your unique needs and those of your clients being the most compliant AML software. With our easy-to-use comprehensive platform and customisation options, you can carry out due diligence more efficiently than ever before.
We also offer the best customer support and training in the industry – check out our reviews, ensuring that you have the assistance you need, when you need it. Plus, with our reputation for reliability and effectiveness, you can trust that your AML compliance efforts will be watertight. Want to see for yourself?
Sign up for our free demo and learn more about how Verify 365 can help your firm today.