Navigating the financial crime landscape

Troy La Huis, Ralph D. Wright
Fin Crime Navigating Fin Crime Landscape

The financial crime landscape is ever-changing. Our team is here to provide analysis and perspective and help you maintain and enhance your program.

Welcome to FinCrime in Context, a knowledge hub where Crowe specialists will provide insights on the latest trends and events that are shaping the financial crime landscape.

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The financial crime prevention community

More than 20 years ago, Crowe embarked on a journey to provide assistance and value to the financial crime prevention community. Many things have changed since. Now the stakes are higher, the criminals are more sophisticated, and the money moves much more quickly.

As financial crime prevention professionals, we need to take advantage of every opportunity we encounter to be smarter and faster. The financial crime professionals at Crowe are part of a larger financial services community committed to helping organizations and individuals access the resources they need to improve their lives and the lives of those around them.

We share this great responsibility with you. In addition to serving as contributors to this new knowledge hub, our specialists are leaders in multiple financial crime prevention communities that support the safe exchange of information among peers. We will bring these insights and those from more than 300 annual projects to this publication in an effort to make our world a safer and more secure place to live.

Not by accident, we are launching FinCrime in Context with articles on crypto and digital assets, automation, cannabis, and cloud technology. Each of these areas touch financial crime in different ways, yet they all share a common thread of disruption.

Crypto and digital assets

In 1897, rumors surfaced that the American writer Mark Twain was impoverished and dying in London. In fact, it was Twain’s cousin James Clemens who was ill, and he recovered. In response to the stories about his demise, Twain famously commented, “The report of my death was an exaggeration.” In the years to come, financial services professionals might say the same about crypto and digital assets.

Much is yet to be determined about regulation, privacy, and adoption of this novel – and disruptive – form of exchange. But current volatility aside, crypto and digital assets are not going anywhere, and they likely will have a dramatic impact on our society and the way money moves across the world.


The emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) in technology has made only incremental improvement in our ability to combat financial crime. But it won’t be long before new technologies break the barriers of data aggregation and quantum computing capabilities.

In the meantime, a more immediate disruption might be afoot: automation. Cast in the shadow of AI, automation is emerging as a capability to reduce and potentially eliminate the most time-consuming functions of fraud prevention and anti-money laundering efforts, including automated alert assignment, identification of additional transaction details, and automated public domain searches to aid in alert review processing times.


Regardless of individual opinions on the legalization of cannabis, that train has left the station, and it’s halfway across the country. The rapid emergence of cannabis-related businesses (CRBs) is providing many opportunities for innovators and early adopters willing to assume and manage the risk of banking in this industry.

Banks and nonbank financial institutions that work with CRBs need to assess the specific risks that are present when partnering with CRBs, including multidimensional due diligence programs at onboarding and beyond and advanced transaction monitoring programs to assist in identifying activity that should be reviewed within the financial crime program.

Cloud computing

The COVID-19 pandemic further defined the concept of disruption for many organizations and financial crime professionals. Financial crime programs have been disrupted as has information technology infrastructure.

The sudden and unexpected need to implement and manage remote connectivity for the vast majority of an organization’s workforce highlighted the advantages of cloud-based infrastructure. But it has taxed many information security professionals. The shift to remote work has laid bare the necessity of establishing a solid cloud strategy, road map, and effective governance and controls to successfully implement and rely on cloud-based infrastructure and solutions.

Meeting challenges head-on

Identifying and mitigating financial crime is more than a 24/7 endeavor. Crowe specialists understand the nuances, interdependencies, and challenges of the financial crime landscape – and how to help organizations get and stay secure.

Our goal with FinCrime in Context is to provide analysis of the circumstances and events surrounding financial crime and to help organizations large and small develop and maintain effective financial crime programs.

We hope you find our insights useful in your efforts to combat financial crime. We also welcome your input. If you have an idea you want us to explore, are looking to collaborate, or have thoughts of your own you would like to share, please let us know.