REFORMING THE BANK SECRECY ACT TO ADDRESS EMERGING TECHNOLOGY AND PREVENT ILLICIT FINANCING
Bradstreet, Shawn M.
Bergin, Richard D., IV
Brown, Shannon A.
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The Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) was enacted by Congress to prevent criminals from hiding or laundering their illicit gains through the U.S. banking system. Over the years, criminals continue to exploit the financial system by moving illegal money using new technology. Lawmakers should amend the age-old BSA to address monetary thresholds of currency transaction reports and suspicious activity reports, along with addressing emerging financial technology (Fintech). In dealing with these issues, a delicate balance exists between increasing regulation to prevent crime and hindering the growth of innovation and customer convenience, along with privacy concerns. This thesis provides policy analysis and proposals for legislative and technological improvements to financial fraud detection. Furthermore, policy leaders will have a comprehensive understanding of the benefits and consequences of specific policy actions. This thesis concludes with policy recommendations of the BSA to include increasing the currency transaction report from $10,000 to $60,000 along with incorporating the controversial beneficial ownership provision. Last, add a minimum standard for a client opening financial accounts, increase know-your-customer requirements, and regulate peer-to-peer devices. As criminal organizations continue to move money throughout the U.S. financial services sector, legislators should amend the BSA to address these areas of concern to ensure financial stability and integrity.
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