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5 things to look for in a transaction monitoring solution
Robin Lee
June 24, 2020
Whether you’re looking to improve or completely replace your transaction monitoring system, the choice and decisions can quite frankly be overwhelming. There is so much to consider and a crazy amount technology to comprehend.

In this circa 3 minute read I hope to help you save you vast amounts of money and huge amounts of heart and headache. Here I explain five essential features a transaction monitoring system that no compliance officer should have to do without.

1. Flexible deployment

One of the first considerations you will need to make is how you will deploy the new anti-money laundering (AML) system. There are essentially three core options, but this will depend on the vendor:

  1. On the cloud hosted by the vendor
  2. On the cloud hosted by yourselves
  3. On a server, on your premise

The choice you make should be dictated by your preferences and any regulatory requirements. Some regulators, for example, require on premise AML systems to ensure the data doesn’t leave the server.

Systems hosted on the cloud are popular due to benefits including cheaper implementation costs and easier maintenance and upgrades. You should do your research and choose your vendor carefully though. Some systems operating from the cloud will face limitations, which can hamper performance.

Napier offers all three deployment options with an excellent underlying system architecture that’s free from performance constraints.

2. Ability to build, iterate and test rules

If there’s a one feature you should be careful not to overlook or underestimate, it’s the ability to change and test rules. AML systems depend on algorithms, and algorithms depend on rules. The better your rules, the better the algorithm works and the lower the rate of false positives and false negatives.

With the performance of your AML system hugely affected by your unique set of rules, the need to add, modify and test rules is an essential requirement. The impact of Covid-19 has certainly reinforced that rules which worked perfectly six months ago may no longer be applicable today.

What differentiates vendors is whether you are able to independently change and test rules within your user interface. With traditional AML solutions, it is a normal to have to go back to the vendor to request new code to be written every time you want to add or change a rule. As you probably guessed, this is really expensive (be sure to confirm just how expensive) as well as frustratingly time consuming.

In contrast, at the heart of Napier’s AML solution is the ability to create and build your own rules without any need to write code. Designed for non-technical users, our rule builder lets you build new rules and test them in the sandbox area. Once you’ve seen the results, you can tweak and retest or implement quickly with no disruption to your compliance monitoring.

Napier’s Sandbox is the world’s most powerful rules engine, allowing analysts to modify, add, test and refine rules in real-time with live data, without disrupting the production environment.

3. User configurability

Most transaction monitoring systems will have a dashboard, which usually comprises a range of widgets, such as different charts displaying various information, to help you manage the data the system tracks and analyses.

However, what’s most important is the ability to configure your dashboard – i.e. to be able to swap widgets in and out as you please. This essential configurability will allow you to see all the widgets that help you to work efficiently, without the distraction or clutter of widgets that are either irrelevant or not to your personal preference.

When you’ve got the flexibility and control to see everything you want, and nothing that you don’t, you will not only be equipped to work faster, but to make decisions with greater accuracy.

4. Simple unified platform

A complete and comprehensive AML solution should provide several applications: transaction monitoring, payment and client screening, client activity reviews and enhanced risk assessment. To stem a flood of potential difficulties, you should look to keep all these applications within the same unified platform.

Using different vendors for different AML applications, or a single vendor that does not provide a unified platform, will mean you will likely need to close one application before opening another. The result is a network of clunky, inefficient and patched together systems. Integrating all-important data from one application to another can be particularly difficult.

All of Napier’s AML applications are provided within a simple unified platform. Moving from one application to another is easy and data is automatically shared. This not only improves the efficiency and effectiveness of compliance operations, but also facilitates greater job satisfaction with a system that is enjoyable to use.

5. Fully integrated AI

The need for artificial intelligence (AI) in any transaction monitoring system is a given. The consensus is that AI is no longer a ‘nice to have’, but an important and necessary weapon in the fight against money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crimes.

AI can be bolted onto existing systems to enhance capabilities and it is quite typical to be given a choice of two functional options: AI can either learn to replicate repetitive/low input tasks, or by analysing the customer and building a profile of what normal activity looks like, AI can identify future outliers.

Facilitating a more holistic, integrated approach to compliance, Napier’s AML technology provides both these functions with  an innovative AI layer  which sits on top of the entire transaction monitoring system. This multi-faceted approach enables more false positives and false negatives to be filtered out, and more accurate alerts as a result.

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Napier is here to make the world a safer place through intelligent compliance. Our technology can completely transform your compliance processes, moving you from a tick box exercise to a competitive edge.

Request a demo today from one of our experts.