Credit Unions Given Time to Adjust to New FinCEN Priorities

Credit unions will not yet be required to revise their Bank Secrecy Act policies to conform to priorities issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, National Credit Union Administration Chairman Todd Harper said in a new letter.

Harper said that the NCUA will determine whether new rules are needed to address how the new priorities should be incorporated into credit union risk-based compliance programs.

The agency will not require credit unions to change their policies until the effective date of a revised rule and examiners will not check whether credit unions are taking into account the priorities until the rules are finalized. Harper said, however, that credit unions may wish to begin examining the priorities and determine how they will follow them.

On June 30, FinCEN released a list of priorities that was required by federal anti-money laundering legislation enacted last year. “The priorities reflect longstanding and continuing [money laundering] concerns previously identified by FinCEN and other Treasury components and U.S. government departments and agencies,” FinCEN said, in issuing the list.

FinCEN said the priorities, in no particular order are:

  • Corruption
  • Cybercrime
  • Foreign and domestic terrorist financing
  • Fraud
  • Transnational criminal organization activity
  • Drug trafficking
  • Human trafficking
  • Weapons proliferation financing.

“The establishment of these priorities is intended to assist all covered institutions in their efforts to meet their obligations under laws and regulations designed to combat money laundering and counter terrorist financing,” FinCEN said. Officials added that not every priority will be relevant to every institution.


Interagency Statement on the Issuance of the Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism National Priorities

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