ACAMS launches transaction monitoring certification

The Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS) has launched its first-ever certification program focused on transaction monitoring roles for early career professionals and their supervisors.

The Certified Transaction Monitoring Associate (CTMA) program establishes a new global standard for compliance staff tasked with reviewing, investigating and escalating the transactional alerts that could potentially lead to the filing of suspicious activity reports (SARs).

Association members pursuing their certification will learn how rules and other parameters are used to generate alerts on transactions linked to an array of customer types and products, and at various points of client engagement. Successful candidates will be equipped to distinguish valid alerts from false positives, analyse fluctuations in alert volumes, investigate transactional activity for red flags, and create audit trails that document the rationales behind decisions to escalate or clear alerts.

“The CTMA program is another milestone in ACAMS accreditation that, along the launch of our Certified Know Your Customer Associate (CKYCA) program last month, reflects our renewed focus on helping institutions strengthen their first line of defence against money laundering and other illicit activities," said Angela Salter, interim president of ACAMS said.

“Transaction monitoring is particularly important because it can directly lead to the sort of actionable intelligence law enforcement investigators need most and is being looked at very seriously around the world."

She cited the fact that in July, five of the largest Dutch banks - ING, Rabobank, ABN Amro, Triodos Bank and De Volksbank - formally established Transaction Monitoring Netherlands, a first-of-its-kind mechanism tasked with identifying unusual wires and payments between their institutions.

From November, ACAMS members pursuing the new qualification will be provided with a study guide, digital flashcards, online practice questions and a practice exam. Test-takers will have 90 minutes to complete 60 multiple choice questions.

With the introduction of the CTMA program, ACAMS now offers seven certifications for career professionals in the financial crime prevention sector. In addition to the launch of the CKYCA program in July, ACAMS announced its Certified Global Sanctions Specialist (CGSS) certification earlier this year.

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