FCA Chief says tech is key to tackling financial fraud

Nikhil Rathi, Chief Executive of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), outlined technology and data as key to tackling financial fraud in the UK in a speech delivered at the Peterson Institute of International Economics this week.

Rathi proclaimed that the FCA has “invested heavily in data and technology” to help scan for fraud, with over 100,000 websites scanned for fraud each day.

Rathi highlighted the investment, stating: “We are investing in our data and tech platforms to improve how e use analytics and insights to support our decision-making. This is helping us to take a more proactive stance and, crucially, spot harm and intervene more quickly and more broadly.”

As part of their data strategy, the FCA has moved its physical data centre to a cloud-based service, developed a data lake, implemented new analytics tools, and created a new decision hub, to help work with large, complex data sets more effectively.

So far in 2022, the FCA has recruited 500 new staff, including a number of data scientists, staff from tech-based backgrounds, and are set to welcome their largest graduate cohort ever.

Dr Henry Balani, Global Head of Industry and Regulatory Affairs for Encompass Corporation, said, “The FCA’s commitment to evolving and developing the regulatory system, and its own operational platform, to anticipate and tackle threats should be welcomed. With a sharp rise in financial crime, banks and other financial services organisations require the very latest support to operate effectively and improve standards of compliance and reporting.”

Balani added, “Boosting digital capabilities must be key to this effort. The time is now when it comes to investing in the latest automated technologies to improve AML and KYC checks. These solutions give organisations a complete view of their customer base and activity, and the tools to the act, ultimately ensuring continued compliance.”