Our qualifications help compliance professionals develop relevant knowledge and best practice for operating within the fields of governance, risk and compliance, financial crime prevention and anti money laundering (AML). Awarded in conjunction with the Alliance Manchester Business School, The University of Manchester, you can be assured that you are studying for a worthwhile qualification that is the benchmark of excellence.

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Insight

Financial Crime: A Global Perspective


A fascinating collection of global industry insights on current and emerging trends, challenges and opportunities in 2021 and beyond....More

Can I really help stop wildlife trafficking?


Wildlife trafficking is a big issue. We’re not just talking about endangered animals from Africa being poached and sold on the black market. There are many other ways that wildlife trafficking can be a part of your life, without you even realising it.

How global compliance works at the local level


This insight article will consider what global compliance looks like at a local level. It will also examine how different regions understand and adapt definitions of compliance to their own purposes, and the consequences of this for businesses.....More

Take part in ICA's sanctions risk survey


Share your input into a short survey about your organisation’s approach to sanctions control

Can a compliance team change a culture?


Compliance teams need to think and act more holistically, strategically and embrace innovation – to ‘design in’ rather than ‘bolt on.’ It’s vital they play their part in unlocking synergy and adopt a mindset that values reflection.....More

BIG Compliance Festival 2021 - Highlights


The 2021 edition of the BIG Compliance Festival, the biggest event for compliance professionals globally, attracted over 650 participants from 82 countries worldwide. Attendees enjoyed an array of insightful presentations on a variety of topics. Below we present a summary of some of the event’s highlights and key takeaways from the discussions that took place.

Why curiosity is important for compliance professionals


Curiosity is not often seen as an attractive trait: as the saying goes ‘curiosity killed the cat’. But for compliance professionals, I would argue that it is a key skill we need to improve both personally and professionally, and in order to protect our firms from risk.....More

Combating terrorist financing: Coordination and the ‘human element’


The nexus between transnational organised crime and terrorist financing is a contentious, ongoing topic of debate. The extent of their connection is disputed, but what is accepted is that the motivation and ideology of a terrorist differs fundamentally from that of organised criminal groups.

Sanctions are constantly changing. Here’s what firms can do.


Over the last five years, there has been a significant shift in the sanctions world, from traditional jurisdictional and list-based sanctions to those that are more nuanced and thematic.....More

ESG and compliance: No time to waste


As ESG disputes against financial institutions heat up, financial institutions must improve their governance, risk management processes, policies and disclosures.

7 reasons why individuals enter compliance


Now is the time to get involved in an exciting, expanding industry bursting with opportunities....More

Compliance lessons from the Archegos meltdown


There are plenty of unanswered questions following the recent meltdown of family office Archegos Capital Management—and plenty of compliance lessons to be learned.

How do I begin a career in compliance?


Historically, compliance was never a number one career choice. This has now changed.....More

Banks filing more SARs amid pandemic; is this the right approach?


It’s no privately held belief that our collective anti-money laundering (AML) endeavors are failing. Even with multiple laws, regulations, rules, and guidance that work alongside armies of AML professionals funded with billions of dollars, we continue to seize less than 1 percent of funds laundered. Some parties ponder how and where can we improve.

You’ve got your ICA qualification - what happens now?


The key steps you can take to maximise the potential for professional success that your ICA qualification offers.....More

Is compliance staying the same in a rapidly changing digital world?


In a rapidly changing digital world, thinking around compliance needs reframing. The question today is whether compliance can keep up in world moving faster than any had thought possible

ICA's Monthly News Chat: episode 1


We are pleased to announce the launch of ICA’s Monthly News Chat, a brief and informative video series, providing a rundown of key topics trending that month.....More

Bonuses and bias: the risks of variable pay for compliance professionals


When a compliance professional perceives their pay package may be reduced as a result of their actions, there is a risk of biased decisions

Anti-corruption developments in 2020: China, India make strides


A global panel of experts with law firm Gibson Dunn share insights around recent anti-corruption developments in some of the world’s largest regions, including China, India, Latin America, and Africa.....More

Keeping pace with the latest AI trends


What challenges and opportunities does artificial intelligence present and how can risk and compliance practitioners best respond to these? James Thomas reports on recent ICA Roundtable events

Identity Fraud Report 2020


In this report, Onfido analyses data from its roster of global clients to understand where current and future risk lies....More

Compliance training – the real value and benefit to the modern compliance professional


What is the real value and benefit of training to the modern compliance professional?

[Video] All you need to know about 6AMLD


In this video, James Wood-Rickett, Course Director, Global Lead - Anti Money Laundering, ICA, considers the key changes of 6AMLD.....More

UK sanctions – under new management


The UK has completed the process of leaving the European Union. This article is a follow up to a previous piece where the complicated relationship between sanctions and the UK’s transition from the EU was assessed. Here we will look at the reality of post-transition UK sanctions and the new sanctions landscape in the UK.

Breaking barriers: Advancing diversity and inclusion in the compliance world


As a global organisation, we understand that diversity and inclusion is different around the world - the challenges faced by different groups vary significantly.....More

Compliance, bias and illogical decision-making


Most people understand and accept that human decision-making is tainted by bias. But what is less well-understood is how these human biases can creep into technology intended to streamline, improve or make fairer decisions made by machines.

The role of HR in driving diversity and inclusion


What is the role of the HR function in driving D&I, and the importance of compliance management in overseeing changes in organisational behaviour and practices?....More

COVID-19, cryptocurrencies and fraud


James Thomas considers fraud risks associated with cryptocurrencies in the context of COVID-19

A year to remember


2020 has been a year that most of us would gladly forget. Nevertheless, as we look towards 2021, it is worth considering the lessons learned over the last 12 months, assessing the evolving landscape, and (where possible) drawing on any positives that have come to light. This article considers some of the main features of fraud in 2020 and highlights potential trends for the coming year.....More

The complicated relationship between sanctions and the UK transition period


As the UK leaves the EU there are some areas of legislation that will diverge from one another, sanctions is one of these. The UK adheres to both UN and EU legislation and once it leaves the EU framework it will be responsible for it’s own fate. With the transition period coming to an end, this piece will look at how the UK is preparing to strike its own path and the complexities involved in future relationships with the EU and other countries.

The growing demand for investigations skills


As the compliance world continues to evolve and the number of internal investigations increases, the skillsets needed by compliance staff are changing. This article discusses some of the reasons behind the growth in investigations, how compliance skills are evolving as a response, and the rising importance of technology-based investigation knowledge.....More

The new moral urgency of the UN’s corruption rhetoric


Absorbing bribery and corruption statistics provided by the UN is, even during gentler times, a sobering experience. This year’s figures were as bold and quietly unsettling as ever, in a neat symmetry of the year itself. But the accompanying comments by UN Secretary-General did offer something new.

[E-book] Life insurance: Mitigating the money laundering risks


This e-book will reveal how money launderers target life insurance to their advantage, and how professionals working within the sector can prevent and detect it, bringing benefits to your organisation and the wider society.....More

Will an ICA qualification get me a job?


If you’re investing in an ICA qualification, you will want to ensure that you are getting a positive return on your investment. Here’s a quick look at some of the ways in which an ICA qualification can help you reach this goal.

[E-book] Machine learning for governance


How security, risk management, compliance, and audit professionals can start using this evolving technology in everyday activities....More

[E-book] Training with impact – using immersive scenarios in your financial crime training


This e-book considers 5 questions that can help when designing immersive scenarios for your team, from understanding the audience to creating scenarios that full realistic and resonate with learners.

Cryptocurrency is complicated – but it’s not going away


Cryptocurrency has burst front and center onto the world stage, and we all need to better understand it and the technology behind it. This article will illustrate some of the challenges, even mysteries, of cryptocurrency and highlight the importance of everyone in compliance staying on top of it all.....More

BIG Compliance Festival 2020 – Part 2 highlights


A summary of part two of the Big Compliance Festival with highlights and key points from the sessions.

Working together to stop money laundering


FATF President, Dr Marcus Pleyer, shared a vision for the future of AML at ICA’s BIG Compliance Festival....More

Is human trafficking financial services’ blind spot?


It is generally acknowledged that great strides forward have been made over the last decade in the fight against money laundering and financial crime. Few, however, would claim that there remains little to be done. But a remarkable new report by BAE Systems demonstrates just how far we have to go.

Ask a CCO: Compliance’s role in D&I efforts


We asked nine prominent chief compliance officers what they can do or are doing to create a more progressive workplace.....More

What compliance can do to advance diversity and inclusion efforts


Experts offer best practices on how to ensure your D&I policies, training, and resources are sufficient at this social and cultural inflection point.

Back to the drawing board on transaction monitoring


In the wake of the FinCEN Files leaks, Martin Woods examines whether monitoring text rather than numbers in transactions could serve as a solution to our greater anti-money laundering woes.....More

Top 10 reasons to be an MLRO


As a small child, how many of us dreamt of becoming a money laundering reporting officer? None, that’s how many. So, what makes the role of the MLRO today an attractive one? Here are the top ten reasons to take up the life of an MLRO.

3 tips on how to design financial crime training with impact


To change perceptions on training, a culture shift is needed to demonstrate to employees that training can not only be engaging but actually useful, enhancing their ability to carry out their role. How do you get employees to embrace training and, more importantly, use the knowledge and skills from this training in their daily roles?....More

Managing modern data sources to drive compliance


As remote work suddenly became commonplace during COVID-19, an existing information challenge was greatly magnified: how to record online data sources that are difficult to monitor and manage.

[E-book] Better practices for compliance management


This free to download e-book by Galvanize explains how technology can improve your regulatory and policy compliance....More

10 reasons why you should be a compliance officer


Becoming a compliance officer has many advantages. From job security, to developing highly transferable skills, having a career path from entry-level to the board, being the customer’s champion and the organisation’s ethical heart, we provide 10 reasons why should you be a compliance officer.

How the art industry can adapt to the challenges of 5MLD


The most recent changes to the art market are significant. January 2020 saw the transposition of the EU Fifth Money Laundering Directive (5MLD) into UK law. After extensive consultation, and with HMRC as the regulator, art market participants (AMPs) face considerably more onerous anti money laundering (AML) requirements.....More

UK sanctions: A brave new dawn?


The Brexit referendum has impacted on many different areas and this Insight piece looks at what the UK is doing in respect of sanctions. It starts with a recap on what sanctions are and then follows with an assessment of how things will be done differently, starting with the first set of sanctions issued unilaterally in July 2020

Diversity and Inclusion in the Compliance World – ‘Celebration of People’ Survey


Workforce Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) is proven to have a positive impact on a company’s performance, bottom line and innovation. As one study suggests, firms that have more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenue due to innovation. Compliance is no exception and is only strengthened by D&I.....More

Which ICA qualification is right for me?


This is the question we get asked the most. Although you can find out more by signing up to one of our free online Briefing Sessions, the guidance below will help to get you started.

The future of AML frameworks – PPPs to the rescue?


Are current anti money laundering (AML) efforts sufficient to fight the evolving financial crime threat? Are they effective? What improvements can be made to AML frameworks? This is the first in a series of articles in which we will be asking profound questions of current AML practice, and presenting the case for a major rethink of AML regimes.....More

How COVID-19 brought out the best in society, the worst in criminals and an increase in identity the ...


A crisis will bring out the best and worst of society and the current COVID-19 pandemic is no different. A crisis like this challenges us all to consider our actions and how we respond, this article looks at the positive ways that people have responded but also how criminals have sought to take advantage of it, in particular with the rise in identify theft.

Implications of Europe’s top court recent ruling on EU-US Privacy Shield


The US Data Privacy Shield was in place to protect personal data of EU citizens when transferred out of the EU to the US. The CJEU’s conclusion that the Shield does not provide “essentially equivalent” protection of personal data to that under GDPR and EU law has potentially serious implications, some of which we explore in this analysis.....More

BIGCompFest2020 | Part one highlights


ICA's BIG Compliance Festival 2020, the BIGGEST online event for regulatory and financial crime compliance professionals in 2020.

Twitter cyberattack should be a wake-up call for firms


The hack of around 130 high-profile Twitter accounts reveals that nobody is immune from cybercrime. Here’s what you can do to protect your firm’s cyber defences.....More

Commerzbank’s FCA fine demonstrates danger of AML lapses


A comment on the fine imposed by the FCA on Commerzbank, and a discussion of the wider implications.

The changing world of anti money laundering


Current thinking around anti money laundering (AML) is flawed and is in desperate need of a rethink. The fundamental nature of money laundering, and how we combat it, needs examining.....More

AI is here and compliance needs to respond


Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are set to pose a unique challenge to the future workplace, including the compliance profession. How should compliance respond to such innovation?

Emerging TBML risks and how to manage them


COVID-19 represents a special challenge for all organisations. As well as exacerbating existing concerns, it has ushered in a slew of new ones. If these issues are to be successfully addressed, firms need to understand new and existing risks that pose a threat to business.....More

Shining a light upon our AML failings


The answer to being more effective at stopping money launderers is to challenge the value of processes that are clearly failing. Financial crime expert Martin Woods explains.

6 reasons why professional qualifications are the best way to learn


In today’s world there are many routes to consider when looking at further learning. However, professional qualifications offer unique benefits that give them an edge over the alternatives. Below we look at some of these benefits, and how ICA offer a fresh approach to further education.....More

Managing the increased focus on non-financial misconduct


In this article we will look to define non-financial misconduct and highlight why it is of increasing importance to firms and other organisations across most industry sectors and jurisdictions.

[Infographic] The Big Compliance Festival 2020 highlights (Day one and two)


Key highlights and quotes from the Big Compliance Festival 2020, the BIGGEST online event for regulatory and financial crime compliance professionals this year.....More

Change is needed - can compliance help show the way? A message from the ICA senior leadership team


It is incumbent on us as part of the compliance community to speak up about the troubling racial violence occurring in the United States and around the world.

10 insider tips for writing an ICA assignment


Starting a new qualification is an exciting time: new experiences, the prospect of acquiring knowledge and developing your skills. However, it can bring its own challenges, even outside of the unusual circumstances we find ourselves in currently. Receiving an assignment may see that initial excitement quickly becoming anxiety and concern.....More

Football Rewind: the 4-3-3 lines of defence


The last few weeks would have seen the completion of the English Premier League season, followed by Euro 2020 hosted in a range of European cities. That was, until the world shifted.

[EBOOK] Five ways to create effective, engaging virtual learning


COVID-19 elevated virtual learning from a useful option to a crucial function, enabling employees to continue learning in challenging circumstances. Now more than ever it requires virtual learning to be effective, with a clear structure and definitive outcomes. But it needs more than these for it to flourish, and leave a lasting impression on learners.....More

5 ways to protect yourself from cyberattacks during COVID-19


With governments around the world having intervened to curtail non-essential travel and social gathering to minimise the spread of COVID-19, more of us than ever are now working from home.

A generation on the brink


Iona Bain explains how COVID-19 will shape young people’s financial lives, and considers measures necessary to save a ‘lost generation’....More

COVID-19 fraud: The forgotten fraud risk


Job loss, financial difficulties, health concerns and change of personal circumstances are some of the by-products of the current pandemic affecting the public.

A case study on why ABC compliance is so important


Anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) is a high priority for compliance professionals in all businesses, indeed all areas of life. We have witnessed the “Feds Indict Footballing Aristocracy” within the investigation of the institutional bribery and corruption practices routinely applied by FIFA.....More

4 ways to enhance your fraud risk management programme in a changing landscape


Crises rarely announce themselves in advance, and the COVID-19 pandemic is no exception. Criminals, always unscrupulous, have seized the opportunity presented to them by the pandemic to exploit new technologies and existing products and services to carry out their illicit activities.

Shifting sands: The Changing Landscape in Compliance Training


Today, more than ever before, compliance professionals must contend with myriad challenges including rapid digitisation, technological disruption, fast-moving regulatory change, and new forms of risk. As a result, their capabilities are coming under increased scrutiny, with many asking the question: how does the skillset of the modern compliance professional need to evolve for the function to be successful?....More

5 tips when moving from the second line of defence to the first line


The three lines of defence model is an important way of managing risk within a business. If you're working in the second line and have recently moved to the first line, you could find this a daunting experience.

4 ways to maximise your virtual learning experience


Moving to virtual learning can be daunting but it can also be an exciting new way to learn. As workshops and seminars move online, we have highlighted 4 ways that you can maximise your virtual learning experience.....More

Analysis: Cyber-attacks spike in Italy linked to coronavirus


Italy, a region in quarantine, is experiencing a spike in attempted cyber-attacks to capture the login credentials of employees working remotely during the coronavirus pandemic. But not all the attacks have been successful, and that’s where the lessons lie.

5 tips for working at home


5 tips for being more productive and getting the most out of working from home....More

[EBOOK] Capturing the Red Flag - Nine Questions to Help Evaluate Suspicious Activity


Identifying suspicious activity is both a regulatory requirement and a business imperative. However, it can be an extremely resource intensive, and consequently expensive, exercise. A system that is both effective and efficient can therefore bring significant regulatory and cost benefits.

[ICA Podcast Series] How to cope during challenging times?


Anyone with Compliance responsibilities will know you need a wide range of interpersonal skills to be resilient, successful and effective. The secret is to improve your emotional intelligence. Two sample podcasts are available here and provide small bursts of practical advice of relevance in the current climate.....More

How brain science helps us to understand key influences on ethical behaviour [Podcast]


ICA's regular webinar series presenter and author of the ICA Specialist Certificate in Anti-Corruption, Penny Milner-Smyth, is the featured guest on the Great Women in Compliance (GWIC) podcast.

3 weaknesses that led to Malaysia’s 1MDB scandal


1MDB, the financial scandal linked to prominent figures in Malaysia, is under investigation in a number of countries, and those alleged to have committed crimes are slowly being brought to justice.....More

Women in compliance


On International Women’s Day, we caught up with Angelia Lee, Sandra Horma and Alice Chen, who were on a 'women in compliance' panel at the 2nd Annual APAC Conference last year. They share their great insights, experiences and advice for other women in the compliance industry.

4 ways to increase the effectiveness of sanctions


Sanctions are a really useful tool in global politics, but they aren’t perfect. This insight article explores four ways that sanctions could be improved and made even more effective in their design and implementation.....More

4 compliance career paths – and why they make a difference


For those considering a career in the world of compliance, or those at an early stage of their compliance career, this blog will explore some of the options open to you, and address any questions you haven’t found the answer to – as well ask questions you haven’t yet considered.

After 1MDB, Malaysia steps up its AML/CFT efforts


The cost of financial crime to the global economy is estimated at $1.45 trillion, according to Thompson Reuters report. Eye-watering even as an estimate, the figures are, however, no less alarming when broken down. In the Asia-Pacific region for example, financial crime is thought to cost local economies a combined $166 billion (unsurprising, perhaps, to those who have been following the 1MDB trial).....More

CDD challenges all in compliance will recognise


Individuals working in compliance may know what they are required to do in respect of CDD – and know how to do it – but may be unsure or confused as to why. Here are four questions that those working in compliance and conducting CDD might be asking themselves on a regular basis.

How strong are your CAMELS?


The Basel Committee of the Bank for International Settlements recommends the CAMELS rating system as an early warning mechanism for the assessment of the overall soundness of banks.....More

The art of listening: How communication cultivates compliance


The role of the compliance officer has changed. Typical compliance responsibilities – interpreting regulations and legislation, creating policies and advising various business areas of their compliance requirements – remain fundamental, but as compliance develops so do the requirements for a compliance officer.

Effective AML training: four questions to answer


Ensuring your employees are adequately trained in anti money laundering (AML) is a crucial component of managing financial crime risk. Not only is it vital to protect your firm, but its often required by regulations.....More

Training? Five things that work


If you work in a large organisation, say a bank, insurance provider or oil and gas company, you are going to be deluged with training. When you join and at regular periods you will experience “death by CBT” (Computer Based Training).

2020 will be uncertain and unpredictable. Here’s what compliance can do


Facebook’s tough few years symbolises the danger of underestimating risk. Compliance professionals can learn from the company’s mistakes to protect their own firms in an unpredictable environment in 2020.....More

Do you know where your corruption risks lie?


One of the tools used to understand corruption risk is the Corruptions Perceptions Index (CPI), published on an annual basis by Transparency International, who work globally in leading the fight against corruption. The 2018 CPI, published in early 2019, ranked 180 countries in terms of how corrupt their public services are perceived to be, on a scale of 1 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).

Regulatory Enforcement Actions in 2019


In what has become something of a festive tradition at ICA, we’ve collated the biggest of these fines issued by both OFAC and the FCA this year to see what lessons can be learnt for 2020.....More

Tis the season of giving and receiving of gifts


Offers of gifts or hospitality can be legitimate business practices, allowing relationships to be enhanced and built; but a line exists between appropriate business practice and illegal activity.

Inside the Mind of the Chief Compliance Officer


The compliance career path has never been a straight line. It’s not like medicine, for example, where you know early on you’re going to be spending a lot of time and money learning to become a doctor. And once you become one, you spend the rest of your working days practising medicine.....More

ICO draft guidance helps UK firms clarify AI choices


The UK’s data regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), has issued guidance to help organisations explain their use of — and reliance on — artificial intelligence (AI) in decision making and how such technology might impact the public.

Six steps to improve your customer due diligence


CDD is a key part of any firm’s anti money laundering and counter financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) framework. With this in mind, this blog looks at six steps that the reader can take to help improve their CDD.....More

Future proofing the compliance professional


Technology is set to have an impact on the way in which compliance professionals work. In a future defined by VUCA, what can compliance professionals do to ensure that they have the skills to prepare for the changes?

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