Anti-money laundering, like every other field, has its own jargon. And more specifically, it has its own acronyms. AML is the biggie, of course. Then we used to have KYC [know your customer], which has morphed into CDD [customer due diligence]. Sometimes we miss KYC, because it lent itself to expansion into other areas, such as KYCB [know your customer’s business] and KYE [know your employee]. But we’ve soldiered on with CDD, and its cousins EDD [enhanced DD] and SDD [simplified DD].
Then terrorist financing muscled in – and this caused a major split. Half the regulatory world talks about CFT [countering the financing of terrorism], while the other half favours CTF [countering terrorist financing]. I’m in the first camp, mainly because if you say the initials “CT” out loud often enough during training, you can guarantee an eventual slip of the tongue leading to a naughty word. And this is before we start thinking about all the world bodies that operate in the arena of AML: FATF, IMF, CFATF, TI… It really is an alphabet soup.
I have several doctor friends, and they talk of the amusing medical shorthand they use (or perhaps would like to use) on patient records, such as CTD [circling the drain], FLK [funny-looking kid], SALT [same as last time] and my personal favourite TOBAS [take out back and shoot]. I think we need something similar for our AML checks. Suggestions please!