Commerzbank checks payments for money laundering with Ofac Guard from Ace

Source: Ace Software Solutions

ACE Software Solutions, provider of fully integrated Straight Through Processing (STP) enabled payments and transaction processing solutions for the banking sector, today announced Commerzbank AG, Germany's second largest bank, has successfully implemented their OFAC Guard, which automatically filters payment messages to ensure transactions do not involve blacklisted individuals or entities.

"We needed a reliable, scalable solution that would integrate quickly with our central data processing system. ACE Software Solutions fully accommodated our technical and functional requirements and have remained committed to our long-term needs," said Ulrich Henninger, Vice President, Transaction Banking Payments, International Finance Applications, Commerzbank.
Banks must comply with various regulations not to do business or act as conduits for the funds of individuals or entities deemed to be involved or connected with terrorist activity. These various lists are not identical in different jurisdictions, requiring their intelligent application to each cross-border payment. ACE Software's product takes its name from the US list OFAC, but also scans messages against other national and international lists.
The system has been in production for two years, ensuring Commerzbank compliance with all relevant embargoes. Currently, it processes between 70,000-80,000 messages a day, but this will rise to 100,000 with the integration of the banks investment banking division, and is expected to rise 10% per year thereafter.
"OFAC Guard has ensured our compliance in a cost effective manner, for a project where there is no commercial upside," said Henninger. "The product's low false positive ratio and flexibility for our end-users has avoided negatively impacting our high STP rate for cross-border payments."
OFAC Guard(TM) uses intelligent natural language processing features to quickly and accurately scan financial messages for all types and formats, including non-standard message types like faxes. It intelligently identifies blacklisted entities in transactions and highlights them before transactions are processed. "We are very pleased to have been able to deliver an effective solution to Commerzbank for what is a very significant business need," said ACE Software Solutions CEO Parth Desai. "Anti-terrorism and anti-money laundering are big headaches for the banks because of the volume of transactions that need to be checked and the low tolerance level among bank customers for delays to their payments.

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