Fraud is not going away, unlock the power of RegTech to fight it

In line with the rubric of our upcoming SPOT Forum 2017, “Securing a Cashless India”, we got a chance to speak with an up and coming startup that helps financial institutions by providing a plug-and-play solution to identify and verify business entities. Please read below a short interview with Ms. Meghna Suryakumar, CEO – Crediwatch Information Analytics Pvt. Ltd who tell us how RegTech solutions such as Crediwatch can help financial insitutions and other businesses improve customer experience and save on non-compliance costs.

How do you think regulation is going to impact the Payments Ecosystem in the near future?

Ever since the 2008 financial crisis, regulators have stepped up the scrutiny on financial institutions to comply with current and future regulations. These developments will get even more complex as we venture into sophisticated banking solutions such as payments, blockchain etc.

In the meanwhile, FinTech/ RegTech is not only enabling financial institutions to offer innovative solutions at scale, but are arming the regulators to efficiently enforce the law. So it has become imperative for financial institutions and payment service providers to employ technology to thwart fraudulent transactions.

The emphasis today is on KYC/ AML solutions to ensure that high-risk parties are prevented from entering their systems and hence facilitate fraud prevention. In the future, as technology scales, each transaction can be screened for suspicious activity based on zero-day pre-defined signatures.

Where Crediwatch plays its role in the ecosystem is that our platform provides insights from data sourced from over 2500 sources such as company registries, PEP lists, sanctions lists, crime lists, customs and shipping data, litigation data and advanced sentiment analysis on news media to screen for risky business and associated signatories.

Talk to us about how Crediwatch’s risk and compliance solutions help financial institutions?

As per a popular study by Thomson Reuters, financial institutions relying on legacy systems and manual processes of KYC – CDD take about 32 days to onboard a business customer. They also make an average of 8 contacts with the customer before the account is opened. This is a hassle for  customers. It also costs the financial institution dearly due to high costs of manual expertise, lost business due to process abandonment by prospects and non-compliance fines due to human-errors.

Crediwatch helps financial institutions solve these problems by providing a plug-and-play solution to identify and verify business entities. It is also used to identify associated signatories and their involvements, screen PEPs, sanctions, litigations, adverse media, money laundering and illegal shipping within a span of minutes. Hence, we can process applications at scale and hence reduce KYC/ AML costs. With our proprietary Early Warning Systems (EWS), financial institutions can now generate real time assessments of their customers and take necessary corrective actions.

What are your thoughts on the evolution of the Indian Payments Ecosystem ?

The Indian payment ecosystem is rapidly growing with the advent of demonetization and the push for Digital India. From that perspective, the back end processes to enable quick scale up of payments in India such as fraud prevention and KYC/AML checks need to be fully automated to reap the benefits of cost optimization. This results in growth by focusing manpower on where they are truly needed.

Give us a sneak peek into some of the insights you will be sharing at SPOT Forum 2017 (taking place on 29 Nov 2017 at Sofitel BKC – Mumbai).

I will be talking about how to leverage RegTech solutions to improve customer experience and save on non-compliance costs. I will also be talking about how alternative data is used to expand the marketable universe of prospective customers to small and medium business excluded by credit bureaus.

Why are you excited to be participating in the conference?

I am looking forward to meeting with peers and absorb their insights with respect to how they are solving the problems in the industry. I am also keen to learn about their approach towards cutting edge technology and analytics to achieve their goals in this complex and stringent regulatory climate.