NextGen FinCrime Fighters: The intersection of compliance, governance and why AI has changed everything in 2023

In November, Gary McClure, Head of Client Lifecycle Management Strategic Opportunities and George Collier, Head of CLM sales attended the 2023 Transform Finance event in London. 


Gary has 25 years of industry experience across several financial institutions, providing expertise in Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) and the development of KYC, CDD and AML managed services.

Gary McClure
Head of CLM Managed Services and Technology

In an imaginatively named ‘AML theatre’, Gary and George joined an enthusiastic professional crowd to discuss a fascinating topic on Compliance and AI - NextGen FinCrime Fighters: The intersection of compliance, governance and why AI has changed everything in 2023. There were a number of interesting questions fielded by an expert panel with integration with the attendees. A number of these themes and topics resonated, with a number of highlights below. 

What is AI?

The initial discussion tested the attendee’s knowledge about the definition of AI and the difference between intelligence and consciousness. AI does not have feelings; it can learn but it cannot feel. The panel debated how best this learning can be harnessed to help fight financial crime, such as using AI to help spot deep fakes or improve false positive resolution in screening.

How do we use AI in financial crime?

There was an interesting debate on the many uses of AI in financial crime with a general agreement on the more immediate uses in machine learning but encouragement for more use of predictive AI and adding this more advanced tooling for financial crime. The extension and linking of AML and transaction monitoring, identification of false documents in onboarding, advanced screening through to sanctions monitoring, were all highlighted as tooling at the AML professional’s disposal.

Are banks keeping up with criminals in the use of AI?

This was an emotive topic and there was general agreement that fighting crime is in a state of perpetual improvement with banks catching up, then being overtaken by criminals… and the cycle repeats. The more interesting question was whether the banks have the ability to keep pace with criminals using AI, which through a show of hands suggested that they need to do more.

How do you ensure generative AI is in line with standards?

Discussion on the recent Rishi Sunak autumn AI summit at Bletchley Park on ‘Responsible AI’ was seen as a positive initiative but lacking on definitive legislation and standards. The panel highlighted several areas that AML practitioners need to factor in as part of their use of AI;

  • Countering data and model drift
  • Bias inherence in data
  • Ability to address learning on bad decisions from certain analysts
  • Testing data retrospectively - you can’t just design the model and let it go
  • The need for security and principles

An interesting aside, when the audience was asked ‘how many financial institutions have an AI policy?’ there were very few that raised their hands.

Preparing for AI in financial crime

The panel implored the audience to invest and learn how best to use AI - as it is the future. FinCrime needs to embrace the surge in hiring and developing data science analysts as key skill set in compliance.  

Concerns and call to act

The panel highlighted the transformation of data and how it is becoming the ‘food’ for AI as all data can be used and utilised by big data firms, as well as criminals. They highlighted some of the well-known cases and bias in the NHS and banking industry of how AI has been used ineffectively and the need to improve.

The panel proposed, whilst optimistic, they don’t believe regulators can keep pace with power of technology firms driving data and AI so it’s down to us. The discission ended with a cautionary request;

“Let’s be a little afraid, a little enthusiastic, but let’s get trained (in AI).”

Delta Capita has a successful track record in scaling AML/KYC operations rapidly to deliver projects of the highest quality, in line with client policies and timeframes. Our trained experts cover all aspects of the client due diligence review and can be deployed on-site or at one of our managed service centres – either using Delta Capita’s proprietary technology accelerators or, if preferred, the client’s own technology and platform tools.

To find out more and speak to one of our experts, contact us today.