I have just emerged from my money laundering audit , which wasn’t a problem in itself, but opened my eyes a wee bit more to how the rules are arrived at and policed. This was followed by a request from the bank to one my charities for an update of identities for “know your client”. Fasten your seatbelts and reach for the single malt or valium.
The form was designed by a half wit who clearly has no idea of commercial or not-for-profit reality and is designed for both charities and SMEs alike. For example, I need to provide proof of the charity’s address by supplying a utility bill. As it is registered to ym house and I pay all the bills this is not possible.
Next , each trustee has to present themselves at a branch of the bank. This is an issue as this large Scottish bank has no branches in England (perhaps 2 or 3 commercial centres) so we have to present to the parent company bank. No guessing please, that’s not fair. This requires 4 trips by four people – great for the environment.
I have to present a picutre ID and proof of address. My driving licence has both, but no, this is not good enough. So I print off my bank statement (I am on paperless) but the jobsworth (pleasant and friendly but slavish following dumb rules) at the branch tells me they cannot certify it becasue I printed it off. So they print one off again. I am informed that policy is not to verify identities for other parties but “they will do it” . I advise them that the the letter from the bank tells me to go to the parent company branches to do it.
I then hand over a form to be signed for National Lottery , for another charity of whch I am a trustee and they tell me that the bank policy is not to sign such forms nor to verify identity. Then they go into a tailspin when they realise it is 2 charities I have come for. enter the manager. “Hello Mr Younger” says manager to myself. “Hello” I reply, being a politish sort of chap on a good day. Clerk explains the imagined problem. Manager approves it with a wave of the hand ‘cos it’s Mr Younger.
What this shows is:-
All these trips and extra pieces of paper drive a coach and horses through the Carbon Footprint bull**** we are fed on a daily basis
Banks are running scared of vague and unhelpful rules so cobble together prcodures that are inefficient at best and miss the point at worst
They do not follow their own procedures when it suits them not do so so.
My final observation for now is that as a reseller of online ID checks I know that this could all be done online and furthernore I have banked with this outfit for over 25 years so they know fine well who I am and simply cross check to their computer that my account has rasied no suspicions or problems
On happy note you can look forward to impending chnages in the rules. How do I know ? A wee birdie told me . Will life be easier or harder for you as a result ? What do you reckon …..