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Austrac Compliance Report

How far along is your organisations with the Australian Transactions Reports and Analysis Centre (Austrac) compliance report?

Organisations are not starting early enough when it comes to completing the annual report.

“They don’t start early enough and then it’s a rush job and then we get to who is involved,” Aub Chapman Director of Aub Chapman Consulting said.

He was speaking to a packed room last night alongside GRCI Director Carolyn Hanson at the BlueChilli Start-up hub located opposite QVB the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists ACAMS and along with the Bron.Tech and the GRC Institute came together to tackle critical questions Austrac Compliance Report Preparedness.

The compliance report is due to the regulator on 30 March, which leaves just over a month for organisations to get their reports organised and submitted.

Hanson asked the audience how many of them started the process for the compliance questionnaire and urged them to start soon.

“Honestly, it takes a lot longer than you might think.” She said to the laughter of if the audience.

Over the years the format of the annual compliance report has evolved, and they have also been transparent of how they intend to use the data they have collected.

“I am really thrilled Austrac has been very clear this year in actually setting up in plain English what the purpose of this return is. Its genuinely aimed to be used for good value,” Chapman added.

He explained that traditionally the annual report has been a straight ‘tick-box’. He said that many years ago when they first of the annual reports they got them in free form text and the regulator was unprepared on how analyses this data.

This event also briefly addressed the implications of significant penalties that have been handed by Austrac in the last few years failing to meet their obligations under the suspicious matter reporting (SMR) and threshold transaction reporting (TTR).

An Opportunity for Organisations

Hanson said It is expected that in addition to the compliance reports being created to ascertain the level of compliance of an organisation as well an opportunity for the regulator to set benchmarks.

She added that doing the compliance report was an opportunity for self-reflection and can be an opportunity for organisations to reconsider their categorisations.

“As far a benefit is concerned it’s really about just taking the time out of the busy day job to actually reflection your client, our customer base, and exactly what your splits are your categorisations.” She said.

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