AML Conference Takeaways: Four Money Laundering Trends You Should Know

AML Conference Takeaways: Four Money Laundering Trends You Should Know

Vector Solutions Casinos, formerly Casinos Essentials, completed a successful event at our 13th Annual AML Conference in Las Vegas earlier this month. About 400 compliance staff members from casinos across the country attended Vector’s sold-out conference, and Vector Solutions Casinos was honored to host the following exceptional subject matter experts and government officials as keynote speakers: J. Brin Gibson, Chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board; James Lee, Chief of IRS Criminal Investigations; and Deborah Connor, Chief Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section of the Department of Justice.

Vector’s AML Conference, specifically designed for gaming organizations and casinos, informs compliance officers on the latest trends for Title 31 and AML compliance in addition to threats such as cryptocurrency and other cyber and financial crimes. Ultimately, Vector’s AML conference and courses aim to support casinos in fostering a culture of compliance. In doing so, this year’s conference provided attendees with tons of valuable information. Attendees were commended for their hard work and diligence in helping law enforcement crack down on money laundering. Below are four major takeaways from Vector’s 13th Annual AML Conference.

4 Money Laundering Trends You Should Know

First & Foremost: Plan. Prepare. Test.
As cryptocurrency becomes more common and as cyber threats grow and evolve, such as ransomware, it’s important to stay alert, develop a plan, be in the know, and prepare to take action. One way of being in the know is to stay updated with new regulations published by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, U.S. Department of the Treasury

    1. Ransomware Attacks on the Rise
      Ransomware is an attack on a business’s technology or computer system with the intent to extensively disrupt production with the goal of extortion to incentivize large sums of payments, often up to seven- and eight-figures. Within the last couple of years, the amount of money attackers demand in ransom and the extent of ransomware itself has increased substantially. Contrarily, the average attack window (the time between initial compromise and ransomware) has decreased, which means attackers are willing to engage in prolonged negotiations. This poses a threat to financial institutions, such as casinos. You can learn more about trends, steps to take to protect your property, and pitfalls to avoid with FinCEN’s Financial Trend Analysis on Ransomware.
    2. Compliance Officers are Partners in Fighting Crime
      Reporting suspicious activity, or SAR reporting, consistently, accurately, and promptly is critical to successfully—and without penalty—alerting law enforcement, regulators, and the intelligence community of potentially suspect actions to protect the US financial system. Unfortunately, these illegal actions involve the use of gaming organizations and casinos to facilitate criminal activity. That’s why being persistent and developing a compliance culture is essential. During the conference, speakers often referred to compliance staff as unsung heroes because their work is extremely important to the big picture. Deborah Connor, of the DOJ, gave encouragement to keep fighting the good fight, "It can be exhausting to be vigilant, but you’re crime fighters just like us.”
    3. Technology continues to prove challenging for law enforcement
      From mobile gaming and sports betting to convertible virtual currencies and cyber attacks, technology is innovating faster than law enforcement can keep up. Cryptocurrency is one of the biggest sources of money laundering and tax evasion. The number of cybercrimes grossly outweigh the manpower there is to combat them. Knowing how to identify red flags early on expedites the support compliance teams provide law enforcement, which goes a long way.
    4. The Whistleblower Program
      It’s important for gaming organizations and casinos to remember that they are financial institutions and are subject to the BSA (Bank Secrecy Act). Anti-money laundering is a priority of the highest law enforcement agencies in our nation. As COVID fraud, corruption, cybercrime, drug trafficking, human trafficking, and human smuggling persist, monitoring your properties and reporting on any “bad actors” can help close high-profile government cases. A Whistleblower Program has been instituted to help further the fight against money laundering, and increase the prevention of cyber and financial crimes. You can read about the new Whistleblower Program here

Vector Solutions Casinos’ mission is to add value to casinos with up-to-date compliance training and other relevant HR, leadership, and professional development courses used for plug-and-play options, or within our total management solution, Vector LMS. Visit us online to learn about how Vector can help improve your compliance program with our online training courses for AML, and discover more topics from our vast course catalog to support other areas of training for your team members.

Vector Solutions Casinos Gives a Special Thank You for Making the AML Conference Such a Huge Success:

Everi Compliance
Hogan Lovells

Jim Dowling, Managing Director at Dowling Advisory Group
Gregory Lisa, Partner at Hogan Lovells, LLP
Brian Lopez, Director at Dowling Advisory Group
Deborah Connor, Chief Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section at DOJ
Jim Lee, Chief at IRS Criminal Investigations
J. Brin Gibson, Chairman at the Nevada Gaming Control Board
R. Damon Row, Director at Office of Fraud Enforcement
Steven Dyson, at Office of Fraud Enforcement
Jason Carmen, Manager at I.R.S. BSA Casino Group
Daniel Silva, Assistant United States Attorney at Southern District of California
Rollin Badal, Section Chief - Money Services Businesses and Casinos at FinCEN
Lyle H. Davis, CFE, Associate at Dowling Group
Veronica McGregor, Chief Legal Officer at ShapeShift
Deen Kaplan, Co-Head of Cyber Risk Services at Hogan Lovells, LLP
Drew Porter, President & Founder at Red Mesa


About Vector Solutions

Vector Solutions Casinos, formerly Casino Essentials, has been in the industry for over 10 years, as the leading SaaS provider for online Title 31 and anti-money laundering training, helping clients meet federal mandates for reporting certain currency transactions to uncover money laundering and other financial crimes. Over the years we have built a comprehensive gaming-specific course catalog containing nearly 150 online training courses including Customer Loyalty, Safety, Leadership Training, and more, all hosted in our powerful Learning management system, Vector LMS (formerly CELEXA, a Casino Essentials brand).

We proudly serve over 350 casinos nationwide. Vector LMS for Casinos is trusted by Boyd Gaming, Jack Entertainment, Bally’s Corporation, Four Winds Casinos, Wind Creek Hospitality, Desert Diamond Casinos, Muscogee Creek Nation Casinos, Delaware North Casinos, & Foxwoods Resort Casino, and more! Our learning management system, Vector LMS for Casinos, is the most user-friendly platform on the market.

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