SOCA set to kick SARs into shape

LONDON – The much-criticised suspicious activity report (SAR) regime in the UK will be overhauled once the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) is created, according to Paul Evans, director of intervention at the about-to-be-born organisation. He added that Philip Robinson, the Financial Services Authority's (FSA) sector leader for financial crime "and I have decided as one that we are going to change the nature of" SAR reporting.

Evans was speaking at a London conference on financial crime and money laundering in mid-June. He said the point of such changes would be to "operationalise SARs" to help law enforcement "do more with the information" firms provide, and that SOCA would work with the FSA, the Joint Money Laundering Steering Group, and the Money Laundering Advisory Group to develop the new reporting framework.

The SAR programme in the UK has been criticised by financial services firms as overly burdensome, and a report in 2003 by KPMG noted that the agency that currently vets the thousands of documents – the National Crime Intelligence Service (NCIS) – was riddled with inefficiencies and lacked resources to make proper use of the information firms were handing over.

SOCA's formation of was announced in February 2004 by the UK Home Office, and it is expected to be operational in April 2006. OpRisk

Only users who have a paid subscription or are part of a corporate subscription are able to print or copy content.

To access these options, along with all other subscription benefits, please contact or view our subscription options here:

You are currently unable to copy this content. Please contact to find out more.

You need to sign in to use this feature. If you don’t have a account, please register for a trial.

Sign in
You are currently on corporate access.

To use this feature you will need an individual account. If you have one already please sign in.

Sign in.

Alternatively you can request an individual account here