AUSTRAC launches financial crime red flags guide for financial planners

Australia's financial intelligence agency, AUSTRAC, has developed a new tool for financial planners to help fight serious financial crime, including money laundering, and the financing of terrorist activity.

AUSTRAC has launched on online financial crime tracking tool that will enable financial planners to track the red flags around money laundering and financing for terrorism.

This online tracking tool, built around detailed poster, features the red flags to recognise and act on when tracking potential criminal activity.

AUSTRAC CEO, Paul Jevtovic, said financial planners were well-placed to detect possible criminal activity by customers. They were required to report suspicious matters to AUSTRAC under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006.

Criminal offences could occur at any stage of the cycle in which a customer engaged a financial planner. An online risk assessment tool would help the financial advice industry understand the full range of financial crime risks in their industry, according to ASIC’s deputy chair, Peter Kell.

The broader crime risks included money laundering, tax evasion, fraud, terrorism financing, cyber-related fraud, and welfare fraud.

The red flags for financial planners would look more closely at client-planner relationship, collecting, analysing and evaluating client information, providing financial advice, and arranging products.

Reviewing or making variations to a portfolio, as well as a withdrawal or closure would also come under scrutiny.

The poster and risk assessment are available on the AUSTRAC website


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