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What AML/KYC systems do other practitioners use?

Being AML compliant

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I have recently started a new accountancy practice which will be regulated by ACCA. I wanted to get an insight into other accountants experiences with AML regulations, searches and Know Your Customer (KYC). How do you complete your risk assessment for each client? Do you use a separate software for this? I have found example risk assessment questionnaires (such as the templates from ACCA). However, I find these very lengthy and can see that this will be very time consuming to complete. I want to cut down the level of checks to a sensible amount whilst still being compliant of course. My concern is if I have a compliance review I would not wish be found wanting in my compliance either.

 

What providers do you use to complete your AML searches? I have researched into a company called Creditsafe and they are really pushing me into making a decision and I do not want to unless I am absolutely sure.  How much do they charge you and how do you find their service? What additional systems do other accountants use?

 

Thank you!

Replies (15)

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By Kristela
13th Apr 2021 15:19

Someone correct me if I am wrong - Creditsafe would be more suitable if you work in industry not in practice.
Accountancy Manager has got built in AML and risk assessment.
Veriphy has got AML tool , pay for what you have used.

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By SXGuy
13th Apr 2021 15:42

I have used AMLCC in the past, and for a small fee, you can save the risk assessment template answers and attach them to all your clients who you would have given the same answers for. Cuts the time down dramatically.

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By GR
13th Apr 2021 16:33

Veriphy and AMLCC

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Replying to GR:
Pile of Stones
By Beach Accountancy
20th Apr 2021 22:13

Same for me (as a sole practitioner)

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By Andy556
13th Apr 2021 19:51

I use creditsafe, very pushy sales people but good overall when you get past that. I'm watching the thread for answers as I'll potentially change on renewal as I assume they will try huge increases again.
Highest on my list to check is Veriphy

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By Chris Maslin
14th Apr 2021 09:08

We use Taxcalc's AML online checks.

As our clients all follow a similar mould, we did a fairly lengthy/detailed firm-wide risk assessment not too long ago. We don't do significant "per client" risk assessments, unless that client has something particularly quirky about them.

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By accountaholic
14th Apr 2021 13:24

I've found Creditsafe very pushy on the phone, usual tactics to get through to you, but I'm very wary because of their approach. The product does look good on demo though.

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Replying to accountaholic:
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By Merrygirl
29th Apr 2021 16:37

Creditsafe is a nice-looking product but you have to buy a block of credits in advance and its quite hard for a small new practice to anticipate how many searches you will need. We chose to go pay as you go with Veriphy and are very happy with the service. You have to develop a thick skin once you're on their call list.

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Replying to accountaholic:
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By Merrygirl
29th Apr 2021 16:37

Creditsafe is a nice-looking product but you have to buy a block of credits in advance and its quite hard for a small new practice to anticipate how many searches you will need. We chose to go pay as you go with Veriphy and are very happy with the service. You have to develop a thick skin once you're on their call list.

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Replying to Merrygirl:
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By Merrygirl
29th Apr 2021 16:38

Creditsafe's call list that is. No hard sell from Veriphy.

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By Andrew Lee
20th Apr 2021 10:05

We have used Mercia's money laundering manual for some years, which has now been fully updated. However, I then realised it is impossible to be fully compliant without supplementing with electronic ID checks i.e. to confirm sanctions and PEP status, however unlikely for a small firm!. We asked around and looked at AMLCC, but that product offers a whole solution and we were used to Mercia's system and didn't want to start all over again. We have recently signed with Creditsafe for their AML ID checks and they throw in free company credit reports to get you to sign up. I didn't find their approach "pushy", but it was professional and the service has been good so far. A number of other practices we know have had AML checks from the ACCA, so they are starting to get around and it is important you have everything in place, including a firm wide risk assessment and a tailored policies and procedures document. The firm wide risk assessment is a pain to do, but the Mercia template for the policies and procedures was easy to use. I'm currently struggling with preparing a data map for GDPR purposes! Some days, it is really difficult to motivate myself....

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By Hilary Bevan
20th Apr 2021 10:36

I definitely wouldn't use CreditSafe. They tried to sign me up last year and the (extremely pushy) sales guy lied to me, naming other firms in the area he said used them. I spoke to people I knew at those firms and none of them had heard of them!

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By Elena @ ESA. Ltd
20th Apr 2021 11:05

I've done some research for the most sensible price-wise AML provider.
I did approach Experian, just out of curiosity. Their price plan left me gobsmacked. I was offered the Commercial package (Min. £1,500), which includes one off Delivery fee of £600 (!)
I gave up on comprehending what it was for as no installation was involved in activating the package, only connection to their portal...
A sale person brought this Delivery fee down to £400 (just for me, of cause) but it still didn't sound convincing in necessity of absorbing this charge.

In addition, they charge Annual Access Fee of £400, and extra £0.17p a credit with 18 credits required for “Prove ID AML Check”.

That's not a good partner for a small practice for sure.

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By Software Seeker
20th Apr 2021 11:53

Tax Calc for their AML module. Accountancy Manager for their electronic ID checks (part of their overall offering which I use anyway, except their AML function which I don't find fits my needs.). Good idea to go electronic now, rather than years down the line (like I did) and have to spend enormous amounts of time transferring your manual records across.

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By JD
30th Apr 2021 17:53

AMLCC, as it provides AML training as part of the package.

Have used credit safe in the past and yes, can be very pushy. They even do that whole office cheer thing when somebody gets a sale. ......but use it against them. If you sit tight after a call or two you will find the price drops like a stone.

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