Malta publishes overview of suspicious transaction reports

The FIAU reveived 1,445 suspicious transaction reports from gaming operators.
The FIAU reveived 1,445 suspicious transaction reports from gaming operators.

The Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit has published an overview of reports received from gaming licensees last year.

Malta.- The  Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) has published an intelligence factsheet which provides an overview of “suspicious transaction reports” (STRs) received from operators licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) in 2019.

The FIAU received 1,445 STRs from 210 licensed gaming operators through its CASPAR monitoring system in 2019. The number is an increase of more than 100 per cent on 2018.

Three companies were responsible for 457 cases, 32 per cent of all STRs. Disputed transactions accounted for 46 per cent of all cases reported arising from operators noting account inconsistencies, suspicious activities or chargebacks.

Other disputes revoked around the rejection of large deposits because customers would not verify the source of the funds.

The FIAU reported that 17 per cent of recorded cases involved customers failing to cooperate with requests to their personal documentation in order to verify identity. In 15 per cent of those, customers submitted false documentation.

The agency said that 3 per cent of all STRs were flagged because they involved people who were known criminals according to open-source databases.

Another 2 per cent related to requests for withdrawals to bank accounts located in high-risk jurisdictions, and 1 per cent involved cybercrime offences such as a customers’ accounts being hacked.

Regarding the sums involved, the FIAU reported that 32 per cent of STRs involved transactions of less than €10,000, 22 per cent involved more than €100,000 and 36 per cent involved amounts of above €1m.

The FIAU said: “Although the FIAU does not open its own in-depth analysis in these cases, the majority result in further dissemination to its foreign counterparts.

“As a result, information received through these submissions accounted for 35 per cent of the total spontaneous intelligence reports shared with foreign FIUs in 2019.”

The Malta Gaming Authority has recently launched its new suspicious betting reporting tool, which will become obligatory from January 2021.

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