Actionstep and Verify 365 AML technology integration helps solicitors to prevent fraud and stay compliant

Verify 365By Legal Futures Associate Verify 365

Actionstep offers Verify 365 AML platform integration for solicitors to eliminate identity and money laundering fraud.

With the increasingly volatile legal market, anti-money laundering (AML) compliance, source of funds checks, and identity verifications, are often a huge source of stress for many solicitors’ firms in England & Wales.

As technology disrupts the legal sector, the issue of identity verification and anti-money laundering has taken centre priority. With data breaches and hacks leaving solicitors firms vulnerable to identity fraud, regulatory agencies such as the Solicitors Regulation Authority and HM Land Registry are taking a firm line on identity verification and money laundering checks.

Due to the high risk of money laundering in the profession, conveyancers are mandated to carry out due diligence on property buyers. The required checks include ID verification checks, address verification checks, PEPs and sanctions checks, and source of funds checks. One of the most difficult checks is obtaining and analysing “proof of funds”, a mandatory requirement for all regulated law firms, who are required to verify their client’s bank statements and source of wealth, and to have a robust process in place to confirm the client’s identity, before they can provide any regulated services.

As conveyancing is a particularly high-risk practice area, it’s key for firms to make sure they use a high-quality AML checks provider, such as Verify 365, alongside the right case management system, underpinned by firm-wide risk-mitigating procedures to protect the practice against fraud and money laundering.

In the past few years, fraudsters have become increasingly sophisticated, while regulations have only tightened, leading to increased professional indemnity insurance (PII) premiums for firms. With this in mind, Actionstep partnered with the market-leading ID verification and AML checks software provider, Verify 365, to ensure solicitors firms stay compliant with the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s procedures and HM Land Registry’s Safe Harbour Digital ID Standards, so reduce the risk of fraud and PI claims in the space.

Law firms that use Actionstep practice management system now have the option to unlock a fully compliant AML and ID verification technology integration if they switch to Verify 365.

Rudi Kesic, CEO at Verify 365, said:

“Some law firms still use manual systems of identity verification to try to prevent criminal activity, protect client data, and reduce risk. Anti-money laundering regulations provide an umbrella of rules to tackle these issues. These include Know Your Customer (KYC) and Customer Due Diligence (CDD) processes. For conveyancers, this means identifying clients using official ID documentation, verifying source of funds, and verifying the address. The problems with manual, paper-based systems are slow processing times and high frequencies of clerical errors. In addition, increasing fraud in the property market make the manual identity verification method inefficient and costly.”

The costs of manual identity verification are growing as regulations tighten. Cutting corners on money laundering compliance can be tempting. While this may save money in the short-term, huge fines are being dished out by the SRA to non-compliant solicitors all around the country.

“Fortunately, Verify 365 are providing an affordable solution which meets the anti-money laundering rules for performing fully compliant anti money laundering checks. Verify 365’s innovative source of funds software cuts out intermediaries, speeds up processing, and decreases costs. Thanks to Verify 365’s integration with Actionstep, conveyancing solicitors that use Actionstep can now easily verify, store, and distribute digital identities. This enables secure access to KYC services without exorbitant costs,” added Rudi Kesic.

“We are excited with Actionstep’s integration with Verify 365,” said Oliver Tromp, UK Regional Director at Actionstep. “Like Actionstep, Verify 365’s AML technology is aimed specifically at the legal sector and they focus on helping law firms stay compliant by simplifying the onboarding process. This integration delivers another tailored solution to our customers allowing them to be more efficient, compliant and effective in an ever-demanding, global legal market.”

Verify 365 are among a small number of suppliers that meet HM Land Registry’s Digital ID Standard, which was released in April 2021. This means that conveyancers using Verify 365 are offered “safe harbour” from recourse — on the grounds that identity checks were inadequate — in any claims resulting from the registration of a fraudulent transaction. Ultimately, firms using Verify 365 as part of their compliance process benefit from smoother, more accurate identification of fraud and money laundering risk that manual verification methods just can’t meet.

Mev Dzihic, Chief Technology Officer, Verify 365, said:

“We believe the propensity for a fraud claim to occur when using Verify 365 and Actionstep technology as a fully integrated platform is greatly reduced. Fundamentally, well-managed practices with great risk management processes using quality AML software like Verify 365 will be the type of practices which will be able to eliminate fraud, prevent money laundering, and stay compliant.”

For more information on how to unlock the benefits of Actionstep and Verify 365 integration, get in touch with Verify 365, email or call for a no-obligation quote on 0121 274 2312.


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