FCA maps out January’s UK AML regulation changes

The UK Government’s Money Laundering Regulations are set to be strengthened on 10 January 2019, with the implementation of updates to the country’s AML regime. 

The updates are set to incorporate international standards set by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and to transpose the EU’s 5th Money Laundering Directive.

The Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Regulations 2019 map out the amendments to the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 (MLRs).

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) emphasised that the new amendments pay close attention to high-risk elements within finance and payments. 

Issuing its latest update, the body underlined that these may occur where: “there are relevant transactions between parties based in high-risk third countries, the customer is the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, the customer is a third-country national seeking residence rights or citizenship in exchange for transfers of capital, purchase of a property, governments bonds or investment in corporate entities non-face to face business relationships or transactions without certain safeguards, for example, as set out in regulation 28 (19) concerning electronic identification processes.”

It also highlighted that there is a duty to respond to requests for information about accounts and safe-deposit boxes, with the new Part 5A imposing duties on credit institutions and the providers of safe custody services to respond to requests for information, via a central automated mechanism.

A law enforcement authority or the Gambling Commission may request details related to accounts and safe-deposit boxes including, but not limited to, name, date of birth and address of the holder(s) or beneficial owner(s).

The implementation also sees the implementation of new regulations for firms utilising cryptoasset activities, highlighting that registration is a key part of the new regulated crypto space.