Implemented by KPMG in partnership with expert.ai, the banking Group’s innovative solution takes the podium at the 2023 MF-Milano Finanza Innovation Awards
KPMG, a global leader in professional business services, and expert.ai, the industry leader in providing AI-powered language solutions to enterprises, today announced the development of a news analytics solution to support BCC Iccrea Group’s Anti Money Laundering (AML) processes.
In an increasingly interconnected and global world, financial crimes pose a growing risk on multiple fronts related to protecting the economy, businesses and citizens, safeguarding the integrity of the financial system, social responsibility and, last but not least, corporate reputation and the risk of fines and penalties. Therefore, the ability to identify negative news stories, such as investigations, crimes or legal proceedings, from the media and any other online information stream is a key element in making customer and counterparty audits more comprehensive and timely.
“Today, thwarting money laundering requires screening thousands of exponentially growing sources every day, an activity impossible to do manually,” said Giancarlo Varola, Chief AML Officer, BCC Iccrea Group. “Artificial intelligence is a valuable ally in supporting analysts and financial intermediaries to more easily disentangle the huge volumes of data available. We are pleased with the project developed in synergy with KPMG and expert.ai and especially proud that Milano Finanza has recognized its uniqueness and innovative scope.”
The awards ceremony was held on April 18 at the Milano Finanza Banking Awards, the annual charity dinner dedicated to recognizing excellence in banking. BCC Iccrea stood out in the category dedicated to platforms and new operating models based on artificial intelligence and analytics thanks to its ability to combine innovation and sustainability, winning top ratings for business impact (a competitive advantage for the Bank with a significant return on investment), scalability of technology (use of AI for simplification and automation with opportunities for large-scale use) and originality (unique features that can create a major competitive disruption in the market).
The solution was devised by the team of process reengineering and automation experts at BCC Banca Iccrea (parent company of the BCC Iccrea Group), who then led its implementation by KPMG and expert.ai, leveraging the capabilities provided by expert.ai’s artificial intelligence platform for natural language understanding and natural language processing.
The system monitors the news media, analyzing content and context thoroughly and accurately. It allows the results obtained to be synthesized based on specific scoring algorithms that are designed to determine correlations between people mentioned in the news and the internal customer base, the type and severity of events identified (crimes and misdemeanors such as fraud, identity theft, usury, receiving stolen goods, etc.), and the role played by the individual in the context of the negative event identified. The system provides for dual use: it processes specific requests from BCC Iccrea Group banks within AML processes (e.g., Know Your Customer and Adequate Verification) and it performs constant and proactive monitoring of the entire customer base with alert mechanisms in the event that a target is identified. The ability to constantly and consistently monitor multiple information sources, aggregating the results of analysis to extract and report on information of interest, reduces manual and repetitive workloads to make room for higher value-added activities. In this way, artificial intelligence and human intelligence complement each other and enable true scalability of processes.
“AML is a subject that lends itself very well to the use of advanced digital solutions. The market offers multiple and diverse solutions in this regard,” said Marco Stellin, Partner at KPMG Italy. “The challenge for organizations is being able to select the processes for which to apply them in a timely manner. In complex organizations, such a choice can make all the difference, as was the case for the BCC Iccrea Group, which achieved significant benefits: harmonized working methods, increased quality of results, workforce retraining and maximized investments.”
“The solution we are proposing to support analysts in “Know Your Customer” activities and for automating certain stages of “Anti Money Laundering” processes leverages the power of our artificial intelligence platform to monitor various information sources and access all relevant information in a timely and comprehensive manner,” said Alessandro Monico, Vice President – Italy Sales Corporate Division, expert.ai. “We are honored that BCC Iccrea believed in our technologies, and we applaud the vision behind an innovative project that can generate long-term value on a critical bank process.”