SWIFT is aligning its Know Your Customer (KYC) Registry with the new Wolfsberg Due Diligence Questionnaire (DDQ) for Correspondent Banks.
First issued in 2004, the Wolfsberg DDQ has been updated in response to an increase in regulatory expectations and a call for action from the Financial Stability Board Correspondent Banking Coordination Group (FSB CBCG) and the Committee on Payments & Market Infrastructures (CPMI). KYC Registry members can now answer every Wolfsberg DDQ question directly on the KYC Registry platform, increasing transparency and streamlining due diligence processes.
The KYC Registry is a global KYC utility used by more than 4,200 correspondent banks and funds players in over 200 countries and territories, representing 75 percent of SWIFT message traffic. More than 50 central banks and monetary authorities are also Registry members. KYC Registry membership was recently expanded to include all supervised financial institutions, even if they are not connected to SWIFT, facilitating even wider efficiency and effectiveness.
Registry members upload their KYC data and documents for validation by SWIFT, and exchange this information with their counterparties for use in onboarding and ongoing correspondent banking Customer Due Diligence (CDD).
Aligning the Registry with the Wolfsberg DDQ ensures coverage of up to 90 percent of the information correspondent banks typically require for KYC compliance, delivering major time and cost savings.
“Banks are expected to ensure that due diligence on their correspondents is thorough, timely and accurate,” said Bart Claeys, Head of KYC Compliance Services at SWIFT. “Aligning The KYC Registry’s content with the Wolfsberg DDQ will enable Registry users to focus their energies on risk assessment and analysis, rather than devoting valuable resources to repetitive data collection.”
The Wolfsberg Group is an association of thirteen global banks which aims to develop frameworks and guidance for the management of financial crime risks, particularly with respect to KYC, AML and Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF) policies. The Wolfsberg Group is a member of SWIFT’s Financial Crime Compliance Advisory Group, and there is a long track record of close collaboration between SWIFT and Wolfsberg to address a broad range of compliance challenges facing the correspondent banking community and beyond.
Luc Meurant, Head of Financial Crime Compliance Services, SWIFT, said: “SWIFT’s adoption of the Wolfsberg DDQ demonstrates our determination to foster transparency and efficiency in correspondent banking. We will continue to work with the Wolfsberg Group, and the industry as a whole, to address compliance challenges by leveraging SWIFT’s strengths in standardisation and industry collaboration, as well as our compliance utility model.”