Treasury’s Crime Unit Launches FinCEN Exchange

FinCEN Exchange to enhance information sharing with financial institutions

The Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) launched the FinCEN Exchange program Monday to enhance information sharing with financial institutions. 

FinCEN said it will work in “close coordination” with law enforcement and convene regular briefings with financial institutions “to exchange information on priority illicit finance threats, including targeted information and broader typologies.”

The Exchange is part of Treasury’s broader objective to strengthen the anti-money laundering framework. Operational briefings under the FinCEN Exchange program will begin in the coming weeks.

Through the Exchange, financial institutions will be able to “better identify risks and focus on high-priority issues, and will help FinCEN and law enforcement receive critical information in support of their efforts to disrupt money laundering and other financial crimes.”

Sigal P. Mandelker, Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in announcing the Exchange that “strong public-private partnerships and two-way information sharing is a crucial component of our efforts to combat the sophisticated money laundering methods and evolving threats we face today.”

FinCEN Exchange “will bring together law enforcement, FinCEN, and different types of financial institutions from across the country to share information that can help identify vulnerabilities and disrupt terrorist financing, proliferation financing and other financial crimes,” Mandelker added.

Law enforcement relies on the financial industry to report important data to fight financial crime through mechanisms such as Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) — which broker-dealers must file — and Currency Transaction Reports (CTRs). 

Based on the information submitted, FinCEN provides feedback to the private sector through such vehicles as FinCEN Advisories, SAR Statistics and briefings. 

Since 2015, FinCEN said that it has held more than a dozen special briefings in five cities with over 40 financial institutions and multiple law enforcement agencies.  

--- Check out FINRA Warns BDs of Impending AML Rule Compliance Deadline on ThinkAdvisor.

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