This was contained in a circular signed by J.M. Gana, Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department.
In the memo, CBN warned, “You are, therefore, advised to update alerts protocol in your AML/CFT monitoring tools, in line with the red flags and emerging trends arising from the COVID-19-related financial crimes.”
It added, “Changes in the trends of business activities and financial transactions precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic had inadvertently led to increase in financial crimes globally. This, therefore, requires financial institutions to adapt rapidly and keep abreast of emerging risks and other developments while taking proactive steps to address the new and emerging ML/TF risks. This includes investing in robust data mining and artificial intelligence software to monitor transactions and also report suspicious transactions.
“The Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, as the central repository of suspicious and other financial information, had issued an advisory based on comprehensive analysis of STRs and other information available to it.”
The central bank highlighted that some of the vulnerabilities and red flags identified in the advisory note included increased financial crimes such as cybercrimes, frauds, counterfeiting and substandard goods; diversion of public funds and misused of non-governmental organisations.
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