Block…Change? Blockchain and the transformation of compliance

March 23, 2021 12:30 PM

The financial services industry has spent the last decade warily eying Blockchain technology as a challenger to conventional ways of ‘doing money’ and as a potential risk to pre-existing regulatory norms. But as many of its advocates note, blockchain also theoretically offers the potential to improve radically the way in which regulators and compliance professionals undertake their roles, especially in situations where multiple parties need swift access to a credible ’single source of truth.’

Blockchain thus has the potential to change the way financial institutions submit standardised regulatory reporting, bringing opportunities for non-paper-based oversight, and lighter analysis and examination by regulators. Blockchain also has the potential to be applied to common AML/CFT controls such as transaction monitoring at a systemic level, making it harder than ever for suspicious patterns of activity to go undetected.

Nonetheless, even with the significant promise that the technology brings, it is freighted with concerns about the dangers that a Blockchain driven system, as a single source of information, could become a prime and unrelenting target for tech-savvy criminals and hackers. This panel will look at the regulatory and compliance impact that Blockchain has had so far, and its potential risks and opportunities for the future.

  • David Rowe-Francis, Praxis Compliance Consultants.