RegTech Comment: Do compliance managers need AI help bearing the AML burden?

Jane Jee* explores the technology that compliance managers can turn to for support in meeting onerous global AML legislation.
All over the world, anti-money laundering (AML) regulations are becoming ever more stringent and complex. This places an increasingly heavy burden on due diligence managers, and it is becoming ever more challenging for them to meet legislative requirements and ensure that the companies they represent are fully compliant.
In this climate, compliance managers need to have support with the heavy lifting relating to AML legislation, which is where innovative regulatory technology (RegTech) comes in. Artificial intelligence RegTech in particular is beginning to play a key role in assisting compliance teams in meeting regulatory requirements.
Unlike a human assistant, AI compliance technology is capable of operating around the clock, 24/7, 365 days a year, running constant checks on both prospective and existing customers. As such, it is able to significantly reduce the amount of time staff have to spend carrying out the required checks.
AI is able to do more than simple continual searching, though. Advanced solutions come with additional benefits designed to help compliance managers achieve the deeper due diligence needed both to comply with legislation, and its underlying objective i.e. minimise the money laundering risk.
The advantage of advanced AI
The next generation of AI to be offered by RegTech companies has the potential to support compliance managers in fully knowing their customers by helping them to explore information far beyond the relatively small bubble of the internet that we use as consumers in our day-to-day lives.
One example of this new wave of AI is Kompli-Global’s Samantha, the recently-launched digital compliance assistant within the company’s SaaS-based search platform, Kompli-IQ. In addition to the media reports that can be easily accessed by human analysts , Samantha can explore the un-indexed “Deep Web”. As part of this process, it can sift through millions of uncategorised data and documents to find any adverse information relevant to a business’s customers and their connections.
Samantha can continuously monitor all of an organisation’s clients throughout the day, analysing 500 “stem words” that are commonly associated with financial crimes. The technology is multi-lingual, meaning it can search documents in every language, and even cover local dialects.
Whereas it would take a human days or weeks to explore this information, Samantha will take a matter of minutes to conduct the checks and interrogations that find indications of potential financial crimes – whose perpetrators are known as “bad actors”.
More than a search tool
AI solutions like Samantha can do even more than carry out vital in-depth searches for adverse information on behalf of a human analyst. The technology is also able to report back to risk managers on areas worthy of further investigation, so they can then verify or discount that information. When investigating existing clients, Samantha can also alert team members the minute any critical information relating to the individual or company appears, so they can make a judgement and take appropriate action.
In addition, as a voice-activated technology, compliance managers can interact with Samantha just as they would a human colleague. They can ask her to carry out a search on their behalf, while they are in the middle of another task, freeing them from their desks, and enabling multiple assignments to be done at the same time.
Used in combination with the skill and insight of human managers, cutting-edge AI solutions, like Samantha, can play an important role in supporting banks to comply with legislation, by seeking out adverse information that would otherwise be too costly and time-consuming for a human-only team to find.
The best tools for the job
Money-launderers, terrorism financers and criminals are getting more sophisticated every day. With that in mind, we can expect financial regulations not just to become more rigorous for the next few years, but even more complex too. This will only increase the pressure on compliance managers in the financial sector to ensure they do all they can to identify adverse information about customers.
Technology like Samantha is a vital tool to help compliance managers do their job effectively. Working together, AI and human oversight can enable companies to achieve the deepest possible due diligence, protecting their own businesses and the wider economy from financial crime now and in the future.
To find out more about Samantha and Kompli-Global, visit:
* After qualifying as a barrister, Jane Jee gained broad experience in card-based, e-money, internet and mobile payments having worked in commercial (marketing) and legal roles in the sector for over 20 years. She was Managing Director at Access, the credit card issuing and acquiring organisation, and later became Divisional Manager at Mondex International where she became familiar with e-money regulation. Jane is now focused on delivering Kompli Global’s Compliance Service which fully meets the regulatory requirements and enables clients to take on new business and retain it, confident that they have access to the best available information and expertise to fulfill their compliance obligations.