The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) has recently released updated guidance to help organisations meet their anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CTF) obligations. This guidance focuses on two key areas: employee due diligence (EDD) and AML/CTF risk awareness training.
Employee Due Diligence (EDD)
One of the key elements of any effective AML/CTF program is employee due diligence (EDD). EDD involves conducting background checks on employees to ensure that they are not involved in any criminal activity and are not a risk to the organisation. It also involves ongoing monitoring of employees to identify any changes in their behaviour or circumstances that could increase the organisation’s risk exposure.
AUSTRAC’s updated guidance on EDD provides organisations with a framework for conducting effective due diligence on their employees. This includes guidance on the types of checks that should be conducted, such as criminal record checks, credit checks, and reference checks. It also provides guidance on the frequency of these checks and the circumstances in which they should be conducted.
The updated guidance emphasises the importance of ongoing monitoring of employees. This includes monitoring for changes in behaviour or circumstances that could indicate an increased risk of involvement in money laundering or terrorism financing. Organisations are encouraged to develop procedures for identifying and responding to these changes and for conducting additional checks or investigations as necessary.
AML/CTF Risk Awareness Training
Another key element of any effective AML/CTF program is AML/CTF risk awareness training. This involves providing employees with training on the risks of money laundering and terrorism financing and how to identify and report suspicious activity.
AUSTRAC’s updated guidance on AML/CTF risk awareness training provides organisations with a framework for developing effective training programs. This includes guidance on the topics that should be covered in the training, such as the legal and regulatory framework for AML/CTF, the risks associated with money laundering and terrorism financing, and the signs of suspicious activity. It also provides guidance on the frequency and format of the training and the measures that should be taken to ensure that employees understand the material and are able to apply it in their day-to-day work.
The updated guidance emphasises the importance of tailoring the training to the specific risks faced by the organisation. This may involve conducting a risk assessment to identify the types of transactions or customers that are most likely to pose a risk of money laundering or terrorism financing. The training can then be designed to address these specific risks and to provide employees with the knowledge and skills they need to identify and report suspicious activity.
AUSTRAC’s updated guidance on employee due diligence and AML/CTF risk awareness training provides organisations with a framework for developing effective AML/CTF programs. By following this guidance, organisations can ensure that they are meeting their legal and regulatory obligations and are effectively managing their risk exposure to money laundering and terrorism financing. GRC Solutions can provide assistance on developing your AML/CTF risk awareness training program, click here for more information.