By Louis Ibah
There is the need for stronger collaboration between finance institutions, regulators and anti-graft agencies to curb financial crimes associated with emerging technologies.
This was part of resolutions of stakeholders at the ongoing Regtech Africa Conference holding in Lagos. They also demanded strong commitment to intelligence and data sharing among financial institutions, regulators, anti-graft and law enforcement agencies on suspected cyber crimes and money laundering activities in the cyber space.
While acknowledging that technology was growing very fast and that it was proving herculean to ensure responsible use of technology by consumers, panelists and discussants at a session on money laundering and financial crimes at yesterday’s session, said it was important to have strong deliberate national strategy to share data related to suspected transactions by relevant agencies.
They also called for collaboration among operators, regulators and crime fighting agencies to mitigate the risk of money laundering and financial crimes, especially using the emerging Artificial Intelligence (AI).
One of the speakers at the event, Alex Ogbolo, of the cyber crimes and forensic section of the EFCC said economic and financial crimes affect all sectors of the economy and that regulators need to update themselves to understand the business of the technology.
Using crypto currency as an example, he said before technology is okayed for use in the country’s finance sector, there was need to create awareness on its dangers to money laundering and financial crimes.
Rachel Wolley, head of financial crimes regulation, Poantir, said while it was important to speedily identifying suspected transactions by finance institutions and sharing data and intelligence, law enforcement agencies must ensure effective prosecution of suspects to deter others.
Uyim Brown, a participant told Daily Sun that the pace Nigerians were harnessing technology, especially for financial transactions, left huge gaps for fraudulent persons to dispose innocent Nigerians of their hard earn monies.
“There is need for all involved in the chain of marketing, servicing clients and regulating this important business to work towards speedy identification of a potential crime and mitigating losses. Like one of the speakers said we have to think and act like a thief if we want to catch the thieves.”