Santander deploys ThetaRay’s AML solution for correspondent banking
Banco Santander has chosen ThetaRay, an Israel-headquartered cyber security and big data analytics firm, to deliver its anti-money laundering (AML) capabilities for its correspondent banking network.
The fintech says the solution is designed to help banks achieve more transparency across correspondent banking networks. Over the years, banks have cut back on their correspondent banking relationships, largely because of compliance costs and the lack of adequate risk assessment information for the payments which are processed.
Last July, Santander had to pay $1 million to Norway’s Financial Supervisory Authority for violating the country’s AML laws. The fine was imposed in relation to violations found at Santander Consumer Bank in Norway, which failed to monitor 1.6 million transactions for money laundering between October 2014 and December 2018.
ThetaRay’s solution, designed to spot money laundering schemes in correspondent banking transactions, uses artificial intelligence (AI) to “simulate the decision-making aptitude” of human intuition. This unsupervised machine learning analyses Swift traffic, risk indicators and Know Your Customer (KYC) data to detect anomalies.
The roll out of ThetaRay’s solution across Santander began in Q4 2019, and is set to be globally implemented over “the next months” according to the fintech.
Santander will also have access to ThetaRay’s Investigation Centre, which will allow the bank to “perform full investigative forensics” on transactions and understand why algorithms come to certain decisions, the fintech says.
“By working hand in hand with [ThetaRay], we were able to customise their solution for our specific use and we agreed on a roadmap with new functionalities that will come and enrich the project,” says Santander’s global vice president of financial crime compliance (FCC) controls and transformation, Luis Pinedo.
The partnership between ThetaRay and Santander will eventually extend beyond this AML solution, to help business units across the banking group accelerate adoption of what Santander InnoVentures’ head Mario Aransay calls “disruptive technology” in the AML and fraud prevention fields.