When it comes to a bank’s due diligence with respect to AML/BSA compliance, having a BSA officer is a necessity. That said, it can be challenging to find a high-quality individual to fill in the role, especially with the volatility of BSA and AML compliance standards constantly changing.
A BSA officer holds a lot of weight in regards to maintaining a bank’s reputation and strictly abiding by BSA standards. They are responsible for integrating an AML compliance program, staying up to date with changes to the Bank Secrecy Act, educating staff on how to catch money laundering schemes early and more. Aside from having a quality fraud prevention system in place, hiring a knowledgeable BSA officer ensures that as fraudsters get better at their craft, financial institutions have systems in place to combat them.
Without a high-quality BSA officer on staff, banks are more susceptible to negative repercussions such as criminal penalties, loss in customer trust, damaged reputation, potential job loss and hefty fines that could be crippling to smaller institutions. That is why it is critical to have the right person on your team so your financial institution’s operations are closely complying with the Bank Secrecy Act.
When you find yourself with a vacant BSA officer position, here are some things you will want to look out for:
Knowledge of AML Compliance
It’s one thing to know what BSA compliance is from a surface level, but your BSA officer must have a full understanding of the regulations and requirements and can speak to how they’ve applied them to their previous role. Before hiring a BSA officer, you might want to test potential candidates’ knowledge about things that have been recently added to the Bank Secrecy Act.
For example, within the first quarter of 2020 alone, there are new BSA/Anti-Money Laundering updates issued. Your next BSA officer should know these updates prior to stepping into the role and be able to speak to how they’ve assessed risk when it comes to money laundering and how they can apply it to your institution.
Your ideal candidate should demonstrate that they are able to self start and bring new strategies into your financial institution with real-world examples from past positions. Standout candidates might even come to the table with more specific examples they plan to integrate into your company. Based on how they respond to these inquisitions, you can gain some insight as to how they will respond to changes in the future.
Extreme Attention To Detail
As the industry progresses, banks have gotten more savvy to the types of tricks fraudsters use to get around standard security measures. But just as banks are adapting, so are fraudsters. Criminals are finding new and innovative methods for committing fraudulent activities. Attention to detail is going to be essential for a BSA officer to successfully institute a system that works.
Some things your BSA officer should watch out for include:
- Tracking and monitoring high-risk accounts and customers and organizing data to note when onboarding new clients
- Compiling results and applying responses to financial audits
- Immediately notifying authorities of suspicious activity such as cash purchases of negotiable instruments, and transactions exceeding $10,000
Ideally, your BSA officer should be diligent when combing through BSA guidelines and have a passion for the necessary skills it takes to do the job well.
Passion for the Position
For any employee, not just BSA officers, longevity in the role is critical to the future of your financial institution. An individual with a passion for what they do ensures that they are in it for the long haul. It’s easy to filter out those who are just merely “looking for a day job.”
While it can be difficult to find somebody who is specifically passionate about BSA compliance, BSA officers should have a passion for justice and protecting people from fraud. Before hiring, get a feel for the driving factors behind becoming a BSA officer.
Additionally, ask about the different kinds of training they’ve had in the past, and what kind of training they’d like to do in the future. Here some specific types of training that are optimal for BSA officers:
- AML/BSA Certification – course goes over best practices and should be a basic course that they’ve taken before.
- AML/BSA Training- This course should be taken annually as it’s critical in their development and understanding of new updates to the Bank Secrecy Act as well as AML compliance.
Ultimately, your BSA officer should come to the table with ideas on how to prevent fraud in the most efficient and effective way possible. That’s why many BSA/AML compliance programs across the country use Intellicheck to catch fraudsters.
Go the Extra Mile with Intellicheck
The primary role of a BSA officer is to prevent money laundering schemes from occurring and one of the best ways to do that is to catch it in the moment, in real-time. With Intellicheck, banks can identify fraudsters before they are funneled into the AML compliance program to verify an individual’s identity.
Intellicheck is easy to use; simply scan the barcode on the back of the customer’s driver’s license and within seconds you will know whether or not an individual is using false identification. Intellicheck allows you to save resources on verifying identities down the line by catching fraudulent activity early on.
Thanks to Intellicheck, businesses have been able to identify fraudsters with 99% accuracy saving them money on hefty fines due to AML compliance violations. In addition to hiring a BSA officer, protect your business with Intellicheck to safeguard your business for the future.