Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Andreas Grabner, Stackify Blog, Liz McMillan, David H Deans, Automic Blog

News Feed Item

Surge in Government Investigations Shows Money Laundering on the Increase; More Scrutiny of Overseas Accounts Means Additional Compliance Pressures

Not Just Financial Institutions but Casinos and "Hard Goods" Dealers Must Monitor and Report; Even Insurance and Real Estate Are Under Government Scrutiny, Warns Marks Paneth Advisor

NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwired) -- 07/21/14 -- A recent surge in government investigations shows that many businesses -- including not just financial institutions but also casinos and dealers in "hard goods" such as jewelry, automobiles, boats and airplanes -- need to make sure they have money-laundering monitoring and compliance programs fully in place. Even the insurance and real estate industries are being looked at for money laundering, warns New York-based accounting firm Marks Paneth LLP.

Those organizations that fail to develop compliance programs might find themselves facing sanctions for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), Anti-Money Laundering (AML) policies and procedures, and regulatory requirements. Not only organizations but also individual executives and directors can face penalties for noncompliance

Cash-intensive businesses as well as financial institutions are at risk if they fail to comply with the government's complex web of anti-money laundering regulations. And scrutiny of overseas accounts is on the increase. The US Treasury Department's recent intergovernmental initiatives to implement information reporting and withholding tax provisions of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) indicates that foreign financial institutions -- including those in jurisdictions that have been money-laundering havens -- may need to disclose more information to US Regulators.

"The regulations say that financial institutions such as banks, credit card companies and investment brokers must monitor and report transactions -- and the provisions apply to other businesses as well," says Sareena M. Sawhney, director in the Litigation and Corporate Financial Advisory Services Group of Marks Paneth.

"Businesses need to find out if the anti-money laundering regulations apply to them," Ms. Sawhney says. "If the answer is 'yes,' then they need to make sure they comply. Compliance means not just following the rules but also having your own written policies in place, and documenting the steps you take to track and monitor transactions."

"Casinos and hard-goods dealers are under scrutiny," Ms. Sawhney adds. "So are certain industries such as insurance and real estate. This is because of specific tactics that money launderers have been using, such as overfunding an insurance policy in order to receive a disbursement check upon withdrawal."

According to Ms. Sawhney:

  • Scrutiny -- and enforcement -- are on the increase. Money laundering is an enormous regulatory concern, not only because of conventional criminal activity but also because known terrorist organizations use money-laundering techniques to move funds across borders. The USA PATRIOT Act, put in place after the attacks of September 11, 2001, strengthened several provisions of the existing Bank Secrecy Act. Penalties are increasingly severe. Just recently, The Las Vegas Sands Corp. agreed to pay $47 million to the government for failing to report suspicious customer transactions.

  • Businesses must master many requirements and work with many agencies. A complex web of regulations and agencies govern money laundering. In addition to the Bank Secrecy Act and the USA Patriot Act, the US Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service also track overseas transactions for compliance with FATCA The US Securities and Exchange Commission enforces the Investment Advisors Act, which includes a broad 'compliance rule' that requires advisors to have written policies and procedures in place to prevent securities law violations -- including money laundering.

  • Compliance means not just following the rules, but also documenting that you did. Requirements are complex and sometimes overlap, but in general, they involve reporting large cash transactions and verifying the identities of people who make them. The key to compliance is to establish written policies and procedures that meet the requirements, then document the steps taken to ensure that transactions are correctly monitored and reported. All are subject to audit. Organizations can be sanctioned not only for allowing money laundering to take place, but also for failing to take the right steps, or document that they did.

  • Individuals can be sanctioned as well as businesses. In a case against OMNI Investment Advisors, the SEC charged the chief compliance officer, who the agency said failed to establish compliance programs even after the agency notified the firm about deficiencies. Business owners, compliance executives and other senior executives with oversight responsibilities, as well as directors can suffer penalties if there are compliance failures - or even if policies and procedures are found to be insufficient.

  • Businesses need to find out if they must comply -- and with which regulations -- and then take steps to make sure they are in compliance. The first step should be a consultation with a compliance expert to establish the scope of compliance requirements. Businesses must then take all necessary steps to ensure compliance -- including the development of written policies and procedures, the creation of reporting mechanisms, other internal controls, and staff training to make sure that all requirements are met and that the organization can withstand regulatory scrutiny. An independent review of policies and procedures can help ensure they meet the requirements.

"Anti-money laundering compliance is difficult -- but with enforcement on the increase, at-risk businesses cannot afford anything less than strict compliance," Ms. Sawhney says. "Any cash-intensive business needs to understand its compliance responsibilities and hold itself to the highest standards."

Ms. Sawhney is available for interviews and can author a bylined article. For more information, contact Katarina Wenk-Bodenmiller of Sommerfield Communications at (212) 255-8386 or [email protected].

About Marks Paneth LLP

Marks Paneth LLP is an accounting firm with over 500 people, of whom approximately 65 are partners and principals. The firm provides public and private businesses with a full range of auditing, accounting, tax, consulting, bankruptcy and restructuring services as well as litigation and corporate financial advisory services to domestic and international clients. The firm also specializes in providing tax advisory and consulting for high-net-worth individuals and their families, as well as a wide range of services for international, real estate, media, entertainment, nonprofit, professional and financial services, and energy clients. The firm has a strong track record supporting emerging growth companies, entrepreneurs, business owners and investors as they navigate the business life cycle.

The firm's subsidiary, Tailored Technologies, LLC, provides information technology consulting services. In addition, its membership in Morison International, a leading international association for independent business advisers, financial consulting and accounting firms, facilitates service delivery to clients throughout the United States and around the world. Marks Paneth LLP, whose origins date back to 1907, is the 33rd largest accounting firm in the nation and the 10th largest in the Mid-Atlantic region. In addition, readers of the New York Law Journal rank MP&S as one of the area's top forensic accounting firms for the fourth year in a row.

Its headquarters are in Manhattan. Additional offices are in Westchester, Long Island and the Cayman Islands. For more information, please visit www.markspaneth.com.

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

@ThingsExpo Stories
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
Five years ago development was seen as a dead-end career, now it’s anything but – with an explosion in mobile and IoT initiatives increasing the demand for skilled engineers. But apart from having a ready supply of great coders, what constitutes true ‘DevOps Royalty’? It’ll be the ability to craft resilient architectures, supportability, security everywhere across the software lifecycle. In his keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Jeffrey Scheaffer, GM and SVP, Continuous Delivery Busine...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outscale's technology makes an automated and adaptable Cloud available to businesses, supporting them in the most complex IT projects while controlling their operational aspects. You boost your IT infrastructure's reactivity, with request responses that only take a few seconds.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Loom Systems will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2015, Loom Systems delivers an advanced AI solution to predict and prevent problems in the digital business. Loom stands alone in the industry as an AI analysis platform requiring no prior math knowledge from operators, leveraging the existing staff to succeed in the digital era. With offices in S...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DivvyCloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DivvyCloud software enables organizations to achieve their cloud computing goals by simplifying and automating security, compliance and cost optimization of public and private cloud infrastructure. Using DivvyCloud, customers can leverage programmatic Bots to identify and remediate common cloud problems in rea...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tintri, Inc, a leading provider of enterprise cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Tintri offers an enterprise cloud platform built with public cloud-like web services and RESTful APIs. Organizations use Tintri all-flash storage with scale-out and automation as a foundation for their own clouds – to build agile development environments...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Progress, a global leader in application development, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enterprises today are rapidly adopting the cloud, while continuing to retain business-critical/sensitive data inside the firewall. This is creating two separate data silos – one inside the firewall and the other outside the firewall. Cloud ISVs ofte...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tappest will exhibit MooseFS at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MooseFS is a breakthrough concept in the storage industry. It allows you to secure stored data with either duplication or erasure coding using any server. The newest – 4.0 version of the software enables users to maintain the redundancy level with even 50% less hard drive space required. The software func...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EARP will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "We are a software house, so we perfectly understand challenges that other software houses face in their projects. We can augment a team, that will work with the same standards and processes as our partners' internal teams. Our teams will deliver the same quality within the required time and budget just as our partn...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Interoute is the owner operator of Europe's largest network and a global cloud services platform, which encompasses over 70,000 km of lit fiber, 15 data centers, 17 virtual data centers and 33 colocation centers, with connections to 195 additional partner data centers. Our full-service Unifie...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Carbonite will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Carbonite protects your entire IT footprint with the right level of protection for each workload, ensuring lower costs and dependable solutions with DoubleTake and Evault.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in compute, storage and networking technologies, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Technologic Systems Inc., an embedded systems solutions company, will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Technologic Systems is an embedded systems company with headquarters in Fountain Hills, Arizona. They have been in business for 32 years, helping more than 8,000 OEM customers and building over a hundred COTS products that have never been discontinued. Technologic Systems’ pr...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Progress, a global leader in application development, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enterprises today are rapidly adopting the cloud, while continuing to retain business-critical/sensitive data inside the firewall. This is creating two separate data silos – one inside the firewall and the other outside the firewall. Cloud ISVs oft...
As cloud adoption continues to transform business, today's global enterprises are challenged with managing a growing amount of information living outside of the data center. The rapid adoption of IoT and increasingly mobile workforce are exacerbating the problem. Ensuring secure data sharing and efficient backup poses capacity and bandwidth considerations as well as policy and regulatory compliance issues.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that A&I Solutions has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 1999, A&I Solutions is a leading information technology (IT) software and services provider focusing on best-in-class enterprise solutions. By partnering with industry leaders in technology, A&I assures customers high performance levels across all IT environments including: mai...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Linux Academy, the foremost online Linux and cloud training platform and community, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Linux Academy was founded on the belief that providing high-quality, in-depth training should be available at an affordable price. Industry leaders in quality training, provided services, and student certification passes, its goal is to c...