Category Archives : SARs


DSA Winter 2018/Spring 2019 Presentations

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc.’s president, Alison Jimenez, wrapped up 2018 with two very different presentations. In October, Ms. Jimenez participated as a private sector representative invitee at the 2018 Department of Defense/United States Special Operations Command Counter Threat Finance Working Group. The CTF Working Group topic was The Evolution of Counter Threat Finance. In November more »


DSA’s Human Trafficking SAR Analysis cited in MoneyLaundering.com

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc.‘s original analysis of the first reported Human Trafficking and Human Smuggling SAR filings was cited in a www.moneylaundering.com article “US Banks, MSBs File Few SARS on Human Trafficking and Smuggling” by Daniel Bethencourt. “Many of the SARs filed on suspected smuggling originated from U.S. border states, such as Texas and California, more »


WSJ Features DSA’s 2018 Suspicious Activity Reports Analysis

The Wall Street Journal’s Corruption Currents section referenced Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc’s 2018 SAR Insights blog post. Here’s a few highlights from DSA’s analysis of Suspicious Activity Reports filed in 2018 in the US: A first look at the new Human Trafficking and Human Smuggling SAR options. There are marked differences in reporting by Banks and Money Services Businesses more »


2018 SAR Insights: Suspicious Activity Reports Annual Analysis

With 2018 in the books, Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc. returns with our annual analysis of Suspicious Activity Reports (‘SARs’). This time we focused on SARs filed in 2018 by Depository Institutions, MSBs and Securities/Futures firms. Something Old Some SAR categories have been tried and true out-performers. The top three SAR categories for both Banks and more »


Want to Circumvent AML laws? Buy a Bank

The Venezuela corruption/bribery/pilfering of national coffers scandal has a re-occurring theme: alleged conspirators buying or controlling banks. According to indictments and criminal complaints, at least four banks were purchased or controlled by individuals alleged to have taken part in the international money laundering schemes. What better way to circumvent AML laws than to own the more »


A Closer Look at Corruption SARs

With all the talk of corruption in the news these days, Dynamic Securities Analytics  has taken a closer look at corruption-related Suspicious Activity Reports (‘SARs’) filed by financial institutions. SARs have separate categories for Domestic and Foreign corruption, we analyzed both.   Domestic vs. Foreign SAR Filing Leaders Differ   15,498 suspected corruption SARs were more »


Alison Jimenez to Present at Economic Crime Symposium at Cambridge University

DSA president, Alison Jimenez, will serve as a panelist at the 36th Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime. Ms. Jimenez will present at the “Regulatory Technology Innovation” workshop on September 5th, 2018.   Ms. Jimenez is an economist/data scientist, a software designer and former securities regulator, and appreciates the prospect of technology improving regulatory compliance. more »


Updated SAR Form and Ponzi Schemes

This month the new SAR form is to be rolled out by FinCEN. A mere 10 years after the collapse of the largest Ponzi scheme in history, financial institutions will now be able to report suspected Ponzi schemes with a dedicated Fraud typology checkbox. So what should financial institutions be on the look-out for regarding Ponzi more »


16% of 314(a) Info Requests Involve Terrorism

FinCEN recently released stats on the 314(a) information request program. FinCEN stated that over 16,000 financial institutions are contacted every two weeks with new subject names provided by federal, state, local and foreign law enforcement of persons who may be involved in money laundering or terrorism.   The requests contain subject and business names, addresses, more »


FinCEN Reports Increased 314(b) Info Sharing. DSA Finds Room for Improvement.

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc (‘DSA’) analyzed a FinCEN report which provided data on Suspicious Activity Reports (‘SARs’) referencing 314(b) information sharing among financial institutions.   What is 314(b)? FinCEN’s 314(b) FactSheet explains that “Section 314(b) of the USA PATRIOT Act provides financial institutions with the ability to share information with one another, under a safe harbor that more »


The Catch-22 of Marijuana Banking

Much attention has been given to Attorney General Sessions rescission of the Cole Memo which offered guidance to DOJ attorneys and law enforcement on what types of types of marijuana cases to prioritize. Lost in the commentary is the fact that FinCEN’s guidance to financial institutions regarding Marijuana Related Businesses (‘MRB’) has not changed or more »


DSA 2017 Fall/Winter Presentations

DSA president, Alison Jimenez, has presented on a wide variety of issues ranging from AML risk assessments, to securities fraud, to SAR filings and Counter Threat Finance in Fall 2017.   Fall 2017 Presentations “On High Alert(s): Managing SAR Volume and Risk with Scoring Alerts and SAR Triage”, ACAMS AML & Financial Crime Conference, September more »


Securities Fraud Schemes Account for less than 10% of SAR-SF Filings

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc. analyzed 2017 SAR-SF filings from FinCEN’s SAR Stats to identify filing trends by securities firms regulated by the SEC. Securities firms filed 5 SARs for “Other Suspicious Activity” for every 1 SAR filed relating to securities fraud schemes. Securities firms filed 4.8 SARs for Fraud schemes for every 1 Securities Fraud more »


Casino CTR / SAR Filings & the Las Vegas Shooting Investigation

Multiple media outlets have reported that the gunman responsible for mass shooting in Las Vegas was the subject of over 200 Currency Transaction Reports (‘CTR’) and/or Suspicious Activity Reports (‘SAR’) filings.   Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc. (‘DSA’) prepared the analysis below of 2017 Casino SAR filings for Clark County, Nevada. There were 8,028 SARs filed in more »


Are Title Insurance Companies Meeting Luxury Real Estate AML Requirements?

FinCEN Targets Luxury Real Estate   FinCEN has issued a series of Geographic Targeting Orders (‘GTO’) regarding certain high dollar value real estate transactions. FinCEN explained that the GTO will “require U.S. title insurance companies to identify the natural persons behind shell companies used to pay all cash for high-end residential real estate” and file more »


Alison Jimenez quoted on Sentencing Guideline Implications

Alison Jimenez, President of Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc., was quoted in a May 16, 2017 moneylaundering.com article titled “New Sentencing Guidelines Signal Consequences for Banking Marijuana Firms” by Valentina Pasquali. The article focused on Attorney General Sessions Department Charging and Sentencing Policy issued on May 10th which Pasquali notes “directs federal prosecutors to pursue criminal more »


Alison Jimenez to Present at #FinTech2017

Alison Jimenez will be a featured speaker at the Digital Finance Institute’s #FinTech2017 conference in Vancouver, Canada on May 3rd, 2017. Ms. Jimenez will be presenting on AML, FinTech and the legalized marijuana industry. Alison’s analysis of Suspicious Activity Reports involving marijuana related business has been cited by the Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post and more »


Silicon Valley & Social Media at Center of Pyramid Scheme Surge

Pyramid Scheme SAR Filings Spike   Dynamic Securities Analytics (“DSA’) has identified a trend in pyramid schemers utilizing social media platforms to execute their fraud. DSA analyzed FinCEN SAR Stat data and found a 340% increase in pyramid scheme Suspicious Activity Report (‘SAR’) filings by Money Services Businesses (‘MSB’) in monthly filing rates in 2017 more »


2017 Securities Regulator AML Exam Priorities vs. SAR-SF Filings

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc. (“DSA”) reviewed the SEC’s and FINRA‘s 2017 exam priorities letters to identify AML areas of focus. There are a few areas where the two regulators’ priorities overlap: suspicious activity monitoring, cyber security and elder financial exploitation. The focus on elder abuse is a new area for the SEC this year whereas more »


2016 SAR Insights: Suitcases of Cash No Longer the Front-Runner in Public Corruption.

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc (“DSA”) analyzed 2016 SAR filings reported in FinCEN’s SAR Stats database. DSA will be posting a series of articles on the analysis with today’s post covering financial instruments used in suspicious activity.   Visual Relationships The bubble chart below shows the relationships between Suspicious Activity Types, Products, Instrument (ie. payment mechanism) more »


2016 Suspicious Activity Reports: Most Industries Increase Filings, Securities the Exception. Elder Abuse has Largest Increase in SARs.

Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc (“DSA”) analyzed 2016 SAR filings reported in FinCEN’s SAR Stats database. DSA will be posting a series of articles on the analysis with today’s post providing a general overview and key findings.   Key Findings Elder abuse saw the largest jump in SAR filings with an increase of 117% over 2015 more »


Unmasking Bias in AML Algorithms

ACAMS Today published an article titled “Unmasking Bias in AML Algorithms” by DSA president, Alison Jimenez, in the Sept- Nov 2016 issue. As anti-money laundering (AML) departments increase their reliance on analytics and algorithms, the need to unmask potential bias in AML algorithms is a topic that can no longer be avoided.   The article more »


AML Training: Part of the Problem or Part of the Solution?

Part of the Problem Anti-Money Laundering (“AML”) regulatory enforcement actions often cite poor AML training as contributing to the environment that allowed a violation to occur at a financial institution. Very often, the same enforcement action mandates more AML training. That makes me wonder why doing more of something that the financial institution was doing more »


FinCEN Doesn’t Track Bias in SAR Filings. Should it?

  In my upcoming article titled “Unmasking Bias in AML Algorithms” in the September/October edition of ACAMS Today, I explore the potential for bias (racial, ethnic, religious, gender, etc.) in Anti-Money Laundering algorithms used by financial institutions to detect potential suspicious activity. The most serious outcome of activity flagged by an AML algorithm results in more »


Alison Jimenez quoted in article on AML & Marijuana Banking

The Tampa Bay Business Journal published an article titled “Financial crimes experts get in the weeds over marijuana banking services” by Margie Manning. DSA president, Alison Jimenez, was quoted several times about the challenges that financial institutions have dealing with state-legalized marijuana businesses.   The financial institutions often find themselves facing a Catch-22 situation, whether more »