Singapore: MAS Preparing Data Sharing Platforms to Combat FinCrime

  • Richard Marley
  • October 05, 2021
  • 3 minutes read
  • 115

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is creating a digital platform named Cosmic that will allow banks to securely share information about customers and transactions to combat financial crimes. 

Collaborative Sharing of ML/TF Information and Cases or Cosmic is under development by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). The initiative is taken to tackle money laundering, proliferation financing, terrorism financing, and other financial crimes. 

The platform will enable banks and other financial institutions to share information on customers and transactions. With this information, identifying the level of risk posed by a customer will be easier.

Reports reveal that six major commercial banks, DBS, OCBC, UOB, SCB, Citibank and HSBC,  have partnered with the MAS for Cosmic. It is also being said that this project is the first of its kind, allowing financial institutions to securely share information in a structured format. 

Cosmic will be governed by the Central Bank of Singapore and will be fully regulated to make sure the information is shared for the sole purpose of combating money laundering and other financial crimes. 

The MAS plans to launch this plan in the first half of 2023. Initially, the primary focus of Cosmic will be on three key financial crime risks in the commercial banking sector;

  1. Misuse of trade finance
  2. Proliferation financing 
  3. Abuse of shell companies 

Loo Siew Yee, Assistant MD policy, payments and FinCrime at MAS said, 

“Cosmic will significantly enhance our financial institutions’ ability to detect and curb suspicious activity, while minimising the impact on legitimate actors. The information sharing framework is designed to target serious criminal behaviours and allow FIs to more quickly detect the bad actors to purge and deter them.”

In the long run, MAS has planned to extend Cosmic’s coverage to a wider range of financial institutions and make a few data sharing aspects mandatory for banks. 

Suggested: ​​Basel AML Index 2021 – Evaluating the Risk of Money Laundering Worldwide