When the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 was enacted, Section 314(a) became a critical tool for investigating persons suspected of terrorism and/or money laundering. And under Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) compliance regulations, 314(a) enables law enforcement to solicit information from financial institutions related to such investigations through what is known as the FinCEN 314 list.
What is FinCEN?
The highly confidential and involved FinCEN compliance process depends upon the cooperation of three critical elements:
- Federal, state, local and foreign law enforcement agencies send FinCEN their requests for information regarding subjects suspected of terrorism or money laundering.
- FinCEN reviews these requests and every two weeks sends its FinCEN list via a secure Internet website to financial institutions across the country.
- Financial institutions must promptly search their entire customer databases for any accounts maintained within the last 12 months and any transactions conducted within the last 6 months by named subjects on the FinCEN list.
The goal of Section 314(a) is to facilitate information sharing to further enhance law enforcement’s ability to identify FinCEN sanctioned countries and fight terrorism and money laundering.
Simplify FinCEN Compliance
Financial institutions have a very limited time to complete these mandatory searches and report any matches back to meet FinCEN requirements. How does your financial institution keep up with the demands of checking current and previous accounts within the two-week FinCEN filing deadline? What kind of tracking system/audit trail will you need to have in place to remain compliant with the USA PATRIOT Act?
Fill out this online form to learn how to automate and streamline the process of fulfilling FinCEN filing requests for customer and account information under Section 314(a) of the USA PATRIOT Act with CSI’s watchlist solutions.