Financial Giants Must Pay $992,000,000,000 in Penalties for Their Part in a Global Billion-Dollar Payments Scam

For their part in a worldwide $1 billion fintech fraud, three of the world’s largest banks and another financial institution have paid multimillion-dollar fines.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has penalised DBS, OCBC, Citibank Singapore, and Swiss Life for their roles in the $2.1 billion Wirecard AG fraud.

Collectively managing $992 billion, the MAS claims the banks failed to adequately examine significant transactions, undertake and maintain client due diligence, and identify the source of wealth for high-risk customers.

German payment processor Wirecard confirmed in June 2020 that the $2.1 billion in funds it had claimed to have in Asian banks did not really exist.

The company’s executives hid the company’s true financial condition using a mix of fake transactions, faked paperwork, and creative accounting.

The MAS reports that the financial institutions would pay a total of SGD$ 3.8 million ($2.8 million) in fines for their part in assisting the scam.

With Singapore’s rising profile as a global financial hub, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has emphasised the significance of stricter measures to prevent financial institutions from being used to launder money.

They need to take strong precautions to get to know their customers, keep tabs on their current transactions to make sure they line up with what they know about their client’s companies and be especially watchful when their clients use intricate schemes.

MAS found no evidence of deliberate wrongdoing on the part of any employee at any of the affected financial institutions, notwithstanding the severity of the violations.

large flaws in corporate governance, accounting, and regulatory monitoring were exposed by the Wirecard incident, which resulted in large losses for investors.

The additional penalties that will be imposed on the four financial organisations are negligible compared to their total value. DBS manages $221 billion in assets on its own and posted record profits of $6.2 billion in 2022.

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