Seyfi Günay, Director of financial crime and terrorism at LexisNexis Risk Solutions, is an expert for Anti-money laundering measures and supports financial institutions in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, effective risk management systems. In an Interview with BTC-ECHO, he spoke about the role of crypto-currencies in the international terrorism and financial crimes.
Mr Gunay – you are the Director for financial crime and terrorism at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. What kind of Anti-terrorism measures you specialize in?
Every day, I work with companies that must adhere to strict national and international regulations for financial crime, such as terrorism, money laundering and tax evasion. These companies are in many different sectors of industry, for example, in industry, in the E-Commerce sector and in the banking sector. The banking system, perhaps more than other industries, is the focus of the financial crime, because Criminals need to move money to their crimes.
Persons working within the banking system and, in particular, in Compliance departments, decision-makers and must not only be able to keep track of the huge amounts of data with which they are confronted on a daily basis,. It is equally important to evaluate information quickly and efficiently so as to suspicious persons or institutions to filter out in the System quickly – and that’s where I come into play.
The Anti-terrorism measures, which I run in Germany and throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa, based on technology and advanced Analytics. Technology solutions in combination with data sets and analysis techniques to help Compliance analysts, all of the information with which they are confronted, to classify and understand, so that you can make better decisions about the identity and intention of a consumer or company.
What is the meaning of terrorism for you?
Terrorism aims to spread through violence, fear, to achieve a specific result – no matter what the cost. In essence terrorist work organizations such as large companies and are dependent, as such, also on the banking and financial system to transfer, for example, money.
What are the Top 3 sources of income in the terrorism, in your opinion?
A terrorist organization needs, like legitimate businesses, capital, in order to survive. Money is needed to pay for activists, to Finance training camps and to purchase weapons.
From my point of view, the majority of terrorist organizations are based in the financing of their illegal activities on three main sources of revenue: donations, drug production and trafficking as well as kidnapping for ransom and extortion. Oil trading, mining and smuggling are other sources of income.
Have you currencies in your company a Department for Crypto?
Instead of a separate Department, which specializes exclusively in crypto-currencies, our focus is to provide our customers with technology solutions, advanced compound technology and data available to make any suspicious persons. Banks, telecommunications companies, E-Commerce companies, as well as FinTechs and crypto exchanges are using our technology to stop cyber crime and fraud and financial crime and terrorism.
Crypto exchanges are currently, among other things, therefore, the focus of the Public, because many users are longing for the same control mechanisms as they are also in the banking sector. The structure of a similar complex control system is for the success of the crypto currency industry is essential. Manages crypto exchanges, however, control measures at the Bank level, I see no reason why the crypto-currency industry should not be able to reach their full potential.
There is, in their opinion, since the advent of crypto-wash currencies, an increase in money?
According to information from our partner company Elliptic, a Blockchain-analysis company, has quintupled the number of users send their Bitcoin to their Bitcoin Mixer, in order to preserve their anonymity, between 2013 and 2015. If you have a closer look at the actual amount laundered Bitcoin, it turns out that money laundering in the crypto area of less than one percent of all transactions, which are performed by Crypto-to-Cash-converters.
In General, Criminals put in money, the standard, officially recognised currencies such as the Euro and US Dollar tumble, still preferably Fiat. This is not to say, however, that crypto-exchanges can sit back and relax when it comes to the implementation of AML (Anti Money Laundering) policies. Blockbid, an Australian crypto-stock exchange, for example, has Recently taken measures to be able to efficient against fraudsters and money launderers approach and shows that she is aware of the risks associated with Bitcoin & co.
Crypto-currencies are suspected for money laundering and the financing of terrorism as well Bitcoin for money is your opinion of lingerie?
As well as in the traditional banking sector, illegal financing activities such as fraud in the crypto space, market manipulation and money laundering. Transactions with Bitcoin can offer, however, contrary to popular belief – not complete anonymity, but to leave behind digital traces. Due Diligence measures can help to prevent illegal financing. So Bitcoin are covered transactions, for example, in a publicly-viewable ledgers that require the use of devices such as Smartphones or Tablets. These fall into the wrong hands, it is possible to reconstruct the completed transactions and activities.
But the fact is that the majority of money laundering to paper money. Transactions with “traditional” currencies are not only heavier, but also easier to carry out. For example, a bag is passed full of cash on a street corner, there are – depending on the locality – little-to-no records of this money movement.
What is it with anonymous Coins like Monero, ZCash or Dash?
Crypto-currencies, the pursuit of complete anonymity and certain basic controls are missing, is, of course, a greater risk of the financing of terrorism, fraud, money laundering and other forms of financial crime. Monero has acquired since the introduction of in the year 2014, for example, the reputation to be the cryptocurrency with the highest level of anonymity degree. In turn, the crypto-payment platform Dash won because of their ease of use and low fees popularity.
This indicates the growing importance of Bank-righteous AML-checks for transactions with crypto-currencies. Suitable control mechanisms can also help to make virtual currencies more attractive to consumers, and to establish you as an accepted means of payment.
How currencies are to a ban of Crypto could be addressed, in your opinion, the problem with that?
Although she is still very young, has the crypto industry has the potential to be a thriving and important branch of the economy. A strict cryptocurrency ban could be a step in the wrong direction. Effective risk strategies and risk management systems, as well as an open and constructive cooperation with the Supervisory authorities, are suitable in case of doubt, better to cope with crypto-currencies, the risks associated.
To be part of their business model at LexisNexis Big Data analysis, as well as patented Identity Management – front of you in the future, to use the Blockchain technology for your company?
We believe that the Blockchain technology in areas such as fraud prevention, Know Your Customer, Sanctions Screening and payment services will provide ground-breaking changes, and working both internally and with partners such as Blockbid, one of the pioneers in the Blockchain-industry, the development of robust solutions in this area.
Generally speaking, our goal is to make companies fit for the future, the strong will be influenced by the Blockchain technology. We want to ensure that firms comply with the latest regulatory requirements, but also Blockchain-related challenges can be successfully overcome.
Your company analyzed data from more than 100 countries and more than 270 million transactions in the hour – what role does privacy play here?
LexisNexis Risk Solutions is serious about data security and privacy. Our goal is to take on a sense of responsibility towards information leadership. We have a comprehensive risk management program for privacy and information security. In addition, the protection of privacy and the security of the information in our databases is a top priority. This is reflected in our strict privacy and security policies, which ensure that the data are protected and do not without permission accessed or used.