6 October 2017

Overcoming AML challenges in correspondent banking

Find out how our Compliance Analytics solutions can help you leverage your SWIFT message data to support financial crime compliance, and strengthen your correspondent risk management

Correspondent banks face tough challenges around anti-money laundering (AML) compliance. And many banks with correspondent banking activities have seen compliance costs soar. Banks need to sift through millions of legitimate transactions processed every day to identify a few that are suspicious or illicit. This can literally be like searching for a needle in a haystack! And existing monitoring systems are just not up to the job.

What needs to change?

Some of the challenges can be addressed by making better use of analytics in the area of compliance. Compliance Analytics, SWIFT’s data analytics tool, is helping many of the world’s largest correspondent banks to gain a global view of their activity across all group entities. You can use it to understand your exposures and activity share in high-risk countries and payment corridors, as well as generate alerts flagging up unusual behaviour or possible policy breaches.

Human intelligence also plays a key role, so employing well-trained compliance professionals who understand the business environment is essential.

Before we had Compliance Analytics, if I wanted to look at our transaction flows with a certain institution, it might take days or even weeks to collect, standardise and analyse the data. Now I can turn on my computer and access that data immediately. I can also share the data globally because it doesn’t have the remitter/beneficiary information so there are no data privacy issues.

Global Head of AML for Treasury and Trade Solutions, Citi

Collaborative solutions

Given regulatory pressure and the rising costs of AML monitoring, there is a growing interest in industry solutions that streamline correspondent banking AML. So collaborative solutions, such as SWIFT’s Correpondent Monitoring service have much to offer.

Find out how our Compliance Analytics solutions can help you leverage your SWIFT message data to support financial crime compliance, and strengthen your correspondent risk management.

Correspondent Monitoring takes a top-down approach, looking at each institution’s global SWIFT transaction activity based on the counterparties they do business with, their message flows and any nested relationships. This holistic view enables correspondent banks to apply a risk-based approach to their AML compliance programmes.

Brigitte De Wilde, Head of Financial Intelligence, SWIFT

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Overcoming AML challenges in correspondent banking

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Last update: 
29 September 2017

Advanced data analytics plays critical role in supporting compliance and enhancing transparency

  • Compliance Info Papers

Extended reading


Compliance Analytics

Compliance Analytics leverages SWIFT message data to provide unparalleled insight into your global banking flows, enabling you to monitor for financial crime risks.


Correspondent Monitoring

Group-level monitoring of correspondent risks supports your AML and CFT compliance


Payments Data Quality

A data analytics service to determine the quality of originator and beneficiary information in sent and received payment messages. Supports compliance with FATF Recommendation 16. 

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