The FSA has announced it will press ahead with streamlining its anti-money laundering requirements for firms, as part of its drive to simplify the FSA handbook and remove rules and guidance that is no longer needed.
The FSA plans to remove the existing detailed rules on anti-money laundering controls in their entirety, replacing them with high level requirements for firms to have their own risk based controls on money laundering. The FSA hopes this will encourage firms to target resources on activities which are most likely to result in deterring and detecting money laundering.
Philip Robinson, the FSA's Financial Crime Sector Leader, said: " The changes in our handbook do not mean we are going soft on money laundering; they are part of delivering a more proportionate and effective regime to counter money laundering."
Regulated firms have until August 2006 to put their own anti-money laundering policies in place. Equifax has suggested that online checking tools may provide individuals and businesses with streamlined protection. Sue Woods, Head of Equifax ID and fraud services commented: " Traditionally banks, building societies and other financial institutions have asked customers to provide documentary evidence to 'prove' their identity. This could be utility bills, bank statements, or a passport for example. But, as well as being time consuming to find these documents, they are easy to forge - so don't really do the job. We believe a more effective way to 'prove' identity is to use online tools that access a variety of information sources. As well as providing an instant response for the business and the individual, it also provides that we believe is a more robust form of identity verification."
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