Australia: Bank enforces deposit limits following money laundering scandal
20 Nov 2017

KYC360 News

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia is to introduce caps on the amount customers can deposit as part of new plans to fulfill its anti-money laundering (AML) and counter terrorism financing obligations.

The bank has come under pressure to reform its compliance structures after it was found criminals and terror financiers allegedly used it to launder millions.

From Tuesday 21 November, clients will have a $20,000 total daily deposit limit using their personal cards at deposit ATMs, regardless of the number of deposit transactions made in a day.

“We believe we are the first major bank to introduce card-based daily limits for cash deposits at our deposit ATMs,” a CBA statement said, adding that: “This change is another important step in the management of money laundering risks.”

The move is also aimed at striking a balance between the CBA’s obligation to prevent financial crime and meeting its customers’ legitimate banking needs, it explained.

Tuesday’s cap is an addition to other steps it has taken in its AML strategy, which includes reporting of any suspicious transactions conducted across its network and the reporting of every cash deposit of $10,000 or more.

The banks said it is in the process of contacting those customers it believes may be affected by the new probe.

“We are contacting them to provide information on the other options available to meet their banking needs.”

The new measures could be followed by more changes to improve its AML operations in the future, depending on the outcome of probes launched against it following the money laundering and terror funding allegations.

The bank is being investigated by Australian financial watchdog Austrac, and in August, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), announced it too would be launching a probe.

The aim of the APRA inquiry is to identify governance shortcomings and make recommendations on how they are addressed, as well as consider whether the CBA’s frameworks are conflicting with solid risk management and compliance outcomes.

Related topics:

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank faces second regulatory probe

Heads roll at Australia’s CBA amid money laundering scandal

Australia’s new accountability regime BEAR seeks to shake-up banking sector

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