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KYC – Knowing your customer and identifying high-risk clients

On the 10th January 2020 the 5th Money Laundering directive was adopted into UK legislation and with it came the obligations that had been enacted before; that you know your client (KYC) and ensure you comply with the 3 steps of the KYC compliance framework:

  1. Customer identification
  2. Customer Due Diligence (CDD)
  3. Enhanced Due Diligence (EDD)

Providing your business with a clear audit trail that is both safe and secure is fundamental in adhering successfully to these requirements. A critical function to assessing customer risk, law firms need to make this process accessible, secure and seamless helping cut costs and valuable time for all involved.

The Minerva platform helps your firm achieve easy and transparent onboarding for your clients – with a secure cloud-based portal that your client logs into, at their leisure, from their own device.

Your firm’s client engagement is easy, no more printing and posting, no need for lots of documents from your client to verify who they are.

In particular, Minerva’s integration with Credas verification technology helps ensure that all users can use this technology safely and securely all with the benefit of using the software on their smartphone too.

Latest technology that helps law firms comply with KYC

By being able to perform KYC checks in real-time, using the latest facial recognition that is becoming common place for consumers, law firm clients can now provide their ID and have it verified as being them almost instantly. This removes the need for complex, time-consuming, expensive and resource draining processes for law firms and legal services.

The very requirement of the KYC regulations go beyond a simple personal identification. ‘Know Your Customer’ is an embedded part of engaging your clients with your legal practice, adhering with AML regulations and ensuring you are carrying out the necessary due diligence which is involved.  

The process is increasingly used by all businesses which handle money in some shape or form, and as such must comply with regulations set out by the 5th Money Laundering Directive and the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

These checks are not only important for minimising your risk to fraud, but also helping mitigate any risk to your company’s reputation that may be posed if you were found to have been working with and for clients who are unlawfully handling money.

A conventional KYC process can be lengthy and time consuming. Traditionally, when carrying out checks, law firms would start the process by requesting documents from their client that will confirm; their legal name, any previous names or changes, a correct permanent address, proof of this address and proof of identity.

This often is requested in early correspondence with a client, but can take time for them to be able to come into the office with all the documentation and to physically prove they are who they say they are.

This is expensive in more ways than one; your staff’s time, your postal costs and the client’s time and cost to come into your offices all add up.

“Minerva has massively improved our KYC and Anti Money Laundering processes and we feel it has really raised the bar to help protect our firm and our clients against fraud. Our clients are finding the Facial recognition ID simple to use and we have very few examples of clients who opt to use the original manual process.“  Stacey Ashe - Partner at Birchall Blackburn Law, Manchester 

More and more businesses and financial institutions are adopting the technology to make this process easier, smoother and more cost effective for both them and their clients. The adoption of two-way user facial recognition technology means real-time checks can be performed by the client from the comfort of their own home, on their smartphone and with instant delivery to their solicitor.

A secure, client centered technology solution

Minerva uses Credas ID and identity verification software helping you protect your business from fraudulent activity and allowing your firm to comply with Know Your Customer (KYC) regulation.

With up to 97.7% accuracy on a laptop and 100% accuracy when using a smartphone, clients and firms alike when using Minerva can be assured that their due diligence and enhanced due diligence is fully compliant.

To find out more, book a demo of Minerva, call: 01604 312146 or email: hello@minervaportal.com

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