What is the state of Economic Crime?

As the secretariat for the financial crime governance here at UK Finance, I probably attend more of our committee and panel meetings than anyone else - a bold claim I know! One of the benefits of this is getting an overview of all the ongoing activity and issues that our members face. I would like to highlight a few topics in what promises to be another busy year, one which offers both challenges and opportunities.

Two recent developments are the establishment of the Economic Crime Strategy Board (ECSB) and the National Economic Crime Centre (NECC). The first ECBS meeting was held in January where the need for a joint public private partnership plan and a strategic threat assessment was agreed. Both of these will be discussed at the next meeting in July. We hope that this forum will allow honest conversation about what needs to happen. The NECC has now appointed its first permanent director general, Graeme Biggar.

SARs Reform

A series of workshops were run by the SARs reform programme team for each sector to feed in their business requirements for SARs reform over autumn 2018. It was interesting to hear the variety of views, but it became clear that this will not be a straightforward reform. The strategic outline business case is planned to be completed by the end of Q1 2019, and we will continue to push for the programme to identify clear objectives for this year, particularly given the funding requirement for the financial sector.

Authorised Push Payments CRM Code

UK Finance submitted a comprehensive response to the consultation on the draft voluntary code in autumn 2018. The APP Scams CRM Steering Group published responses in January but there are still key issues outstanding on which we continue to support members to resolve. These include the solution to the source of ?no blame? reimbursement funding, defining the consumer vulnerability measures and approach, and long-term governance. It is important we get this right in the effort to protect consumers from this type of fraud.

There is also the day-to-day activity of our panels, including the transposition of the Fifth Money Laundering Directive. Treasury representatives have been frequent visitors to our Money Laundering Advisory Panel meetings, keeping us up-to-date on their proposals and listening to the panel's views on transposing all the Fifth Money Laundering Directive measures into UK law. This open dialogue is a good way of working and we will press for it to continue during the formal consultation period, expected to begin at the end of Q1.

We also await the Law Commission publishing its recommendations in the next couple of months, following the consultation on the Proceeds of Crime Act in autumn last year. We hope the Commission has taken on board the recommendations in our response, including the ability for reporting requirements to be 'switched off? where reports are not adding value or are simply duplicating information.

The state of economic crime is one that is constantly changing, and it is an important part of the work we do here at UK Finance. Join us and leading experts at the Retail Banking Conference on 13 March, to learn more about the future of personal finance and hear Ian Dyson, Commissioner, City of London Police, talking about the state of economic crime.

Area of expertise: