A place for your gold or a mini $ laundromat?
5 ways to identify suspicious activity with safe deposit boxes
Swiss banks are synonymous with anonymity. But the threats of money laundering and terrorist financing are enough to force some banking changes — particularly when it comes to safe deposit boxes.
Recently, India and Switzerland have been working closely together to identify Indians who have potentially been stashing illicit money in Swiss safe deposit boxes. Switzerland has already disclosed account information at the request of the Indian government, an action that would not have taken place 20 years ago. But the Swiss government also issued assurances that its safe deposit box regulations are sufficient to deal with increased money laundering risks at this time.
Just how popular are safe deposit boxes today? Industry analysts claim that they are relics of the past, popular in bygone times when documents couldn’t be registered electronically and people held investments in jewels and gold bars. Yet the public still seems captivated by them, probably due to Hollywood’s visuals in James Bond films and news accounts of lost treasures being found in them, such as the recent retrieval of a missing Van Gogh painting,
As long as safe deposit boxes retain the perception of popularity, banks will offer the service — and remain at risk for their use in money laundering activities. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), an interagency organization dedicated to promoting standards for financial institutions, recently identified the following red flags for safe deposit box usage:
CEO of the Alacer Group. Sharing the latest news in financial crimes and best practices that enable financial institutions to prevent money laundering.