Banco Nacional de Angola Implements SWIFT Sanctions Screening

SWIFT has announced that Banco Nacional de Angola is implementing SWIFT’s Sanctions Screening service to help the country meet its financial crime compliance obligations.

SWIFT Sanctions Screening is a cloud-based subscription service that filters messages in real time and checks against customers’ selected sanctions lists. Once active, the Sanctions Screening service automatically routes messages in certain predefined categories to a centrally hosted filter where the messages are matched against a client’s choice of sanctions lists. Sanctions Screening combines a highly sophisticated screening engine with SWIFT’s security, resilience and reliability to create a world-class shared service. The screening engine checks for possible matches from sanctions lists information using logical tests to detect anagrams, inversion of letters, missing letters, misspellings, abbreviations and phonetic similarities.

Dr. Ricardo D`Abreu, Vice Governor, Banco Nacional de Angola, says: “Financial Crime is on the rise globally, and is now one of the biggest challenges facing the world’s financial industry. Banco Nacional de Angola wants to ensure that Angola’s financial community adheres to the highest principles and complies with all international regulations. Implementing SWIFT’s Sanctions Screening is an essential element of this strategy.”

As part of the African country’s drive to adopt global best practice and to ensure that Angola remains an attractive destination for international investment, another five banks in addition to the BNA will implement Sanctions Screening in Angola. There are well over 150 banks globally using SWIFT’s solution.

“Banco Nacional de Angola is the fourth central bank in the Africa South region to subscribe to SWIFT’s Sanctions Screening service, which makes it clear that the service is suitable for commercial and central banks alike,” says, Hugo Smit, Head of Africa South, SWIFT. “Sanctions compliance is complex and costly, and the penalties for noncompliance can be severe. With Sanctions Screening, SWIFT provides an easy to implement and cost-effective solution that requires no hardware or software and no operational maintenance of multiple lists that change regularly. Sanctions Screening addresses a growing industry challenge and further demonstrates SWIFT’s commitment to providing solutions that benefits its community.”

SWIFT’s Sanctions Screening service – which uses FircoSoft technology – screens against nearly 30 public sanctions lists (including OFAC, United Nations and HMT), which are centrally managed and constitute a regulatory basis for stopping transactions. Screening transactions against multiple lists allows financial institutions to comply with sanctions laws by blocking or flagging prohibited transactions. It prevents the risk of large fines and reputational damage.