B2B Payments

SWIFT KYC Registry Goes Global

SWIFT is opening up its KYC registry to more banks around the globe.

The payments messaging company said Monday (July 17) that its KYC Registry is now open to all supervised financial institutions around the globe. The Registry enables banks and FIs to share and access KYC data and documents. Expanding access to the registry means its members will benefit from more information and collaboration in their correspondent banking and funds distribution networks, SWIFT said.

“Extending KYC Registry membership to all eligible supervised financial institutions means that current Registry members will profit from even broader coverage of their correspondent banking and funds distribution networks, allowing them to further consolidate and streamline their customer due diligence activities,” said SWIFT Head of Financial Crime Compliance Services Luc Meurant in a statement.

“In parallel, smaller institutions will benefit from industry-agreed standards and best practices in Know Your Customer compliance. As well as delivering efficiency gains and cost savings, the move will foster financial inclusion and further strengthen the Registry's position as the KYC utility of choice for the global financial industry.”

SWIFT also offers SWIFT Profile, which launchd in 2015 as a report to help banks identify red flags and potential problem customers. The report uses aggregated data from SWIFT and analyzes correspondent banking activity to pinpoint potential areas risk for the purpose of KYC compliance and due diligence.

This year, the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency aimed to clarify KYC rules for banks in an effort to encourage cross-border activity. The Comptroller warned that complex KYC and AML rules could be discouraging some banks from facilitating global transactions, which could mean some customers are “cut off from the regulated financial system altogether.”

Analysts said it could signal clarification from regulators that banks are not responsible for their customers’ customers.

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