6 October 2017

Overcoming data quality challenges in payments

Enhance your payments data quality and efficiency

In the world of payments, top quality data is essential. Data contained in payments messages needs to be accurate and complete to achieve both operational efficiency and straight-through processing. The quality of payment transaction data is also critical for effective sanctions screening and AML monitoring controls. And with regulators introducing increasingly stringent data requirements, you need to ensure your payments data is up to scratch. But this isn’t always easy.

What is ‘bad’ data?

In an ideal world, data included in payment messages would be accurate, complete and up-to-date. But in practice errors can occur, such as missing, transposed or additional characters. Unstructured or incomplete data also creates problems, as does ‘truncated’ data due to size restrictions in some data fields.

What can you do to improve data quality?

If you are looking to strengthen your compliance and operational performance, our new Payments Data Quality service might be just what you need. It allows you to assess payments data quality across your global operations and correspondents, monitor information needed to comply with and investigate specific data quality issues.

Payments Data Quality not only helps you fix your own data quality issues – it also enables you to work with your counterparties to address data quality issues in the messages they send to you.

Brigitte De Wilde, Head of Financial Crime Intelligence and Services, SWIFT

A common goal

SWIFT is working with the industry to tackle data quality issues and develop appropriate standards. To help you take concrete steps to improve your payments data, SWIFT is also developing structured payment messages to ensure data is captured systematically and the Wolfsberg Group is creating guidelines to foster consistency in this domain.

Our goal is to make sure that future standards updates address the data requirements of compliance teams. The sooner banks adopt the new standards, the sooner they can start improving their own compliance and that of their counterparties.

Stephen Lindsay, Head of Standards, SWIFT

Are you ready to start improving your payments data? Read this information paper to learn more.

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Overcoming data quality challenges in payments

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Last update: 
21 September 2017

Industry standards and collaboration provide key to greater transparency

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Extended reading

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. 

Compliance

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.

Product

Correspondent Monitoring

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

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