The Importance of Robust AML Training

Financial crimes against financial institutions are increasingly being reported. Therefore, effective identification and mitigation of financial crime risks are essential in order to protect firms, and their customers, from financial crime. Effective financial crime controls ensure reputational wellbeing as well as compliance to domestic and international regulations and have become essential practices within financial, and other regulated institutions.

Firms have a regulatory obligation to manage external and internal anti-money laundering, sanctions, counter-terrorist financing, and anti-bribery and corruption risks. They must also assess and improve anti-financial crime frameworks and controls by regularly bench-marking and reviewing their internal practices against ever changing regulations and industry best practise. Ongoing training is one of the most important and effective ways of addressing these issues and of preparing for future regulatory changes.

Firms must also work to protect themselves against both obvious and more subtle behavioural risks. Behavioural risks may be a result of over-confidence, the misunderstanding of a particular risk, or even an outright refusal to face up to known risks. Often, a firm’s culture can impact how risks are identified and dealt with – for example, senior management might always have accepted wrongdoing and it may therefore go unreported. Firms must clearly actively combat such risks, both internal and external.

Firms can – and often do – struggle to keep pace with updates in domestic and international regulations and legislation. UK Compliance and money laundering officers are seeing an increase in their personal liability relating to these regulations under the SMCR. The ability to keep up with new regulatory obligations, whilst ensuring current ones are being met, is becoming increasingly challenging. On-going training and continual professional development plays a key part in these requirements.

Regulated industries, such as banks (both retail and investment), wealth management companies, insurance companies, law firms, hedge funds, estate agencies and gaming companies, will all benefit from having compliance staff who are fully apprised and on top of regulatory demands and requirements, the threat landscape and the high risk factors that trigger the need for enhanced due diligence. With the constant shifting of this landscape, an ongoing training regime that not only trains staff in the current scenario, but prepares them for forthcoming changes is an essential part of a firm’s financial crime controls.

The building block, modular approach to AML training is an important one; in the same way in which a gap in foundations can and often will lead to a structural collapse, so too is it important for compliance officer to understand the landscape from the foundations up. To this end, training that explores the very foundations of AML and terrorist financing within the context of the regulatory framework and the ensuing obligations on financial institutions is essential, as is thorough knowledge of Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements. How the work sits within the City’s way of operating, particularly in the context of current thinking and practice in terms of ethical behaviour, is also a key factor. Training best anti-financial crime practices is therefore in itself a powerful best practice.

Lysis Academy’s background and extensive experience in AML, KYC, COB and GRC Training is what led to our collaborating with another City of London educational institution, Cass Business School, to produce the unique Cass Post-Graduate Certificate in AML. This modular course equips candidates from all relevant fields with the analytical skills to deal with the complex investigative and remedial work arising in the AML world. At the same time, it instils the importance of developing the soft skills candidates will need to influence people and organisations. It also gives you insights into how to practise effective stakeholder management. The aim of the programme is to produce technically proficient people who understand the AML world and how to behave professionally, responsibly and ethically in it. To find out more, please click here:

More about Lysis Academy

Lysis Academy provides comprehensive training to our new recruits, enabling staff to gain essential knowledge and qualifications prior to beginning work as part of a client’s KYC, AML or Client On-Boarding team.

Lysis Academy also provides bespoke training for our customers. In-house teams are quickly trained to a high standard through a Lysis Academy accredited course, ensuring higher-quality delivery of in-house Client On-Boarding and KYC services.

Lysis Academy is unique in the KYC market, and ensures that Lysis Operations delivers best quality services to our clients across the wholesale financial markets.