Lockton boosts AML advisory expertise ahead of impending Government regulation

Subject: Lockton boosts AML advisory expertise ahead of impending Government regulation

Lockton, the world’s largest privately owned insurance broker, is boosting its AML expertise with the hire of Amy Bell, who joins as Risk Management Consultant within the Lockton Solicitors team.

Lockton boosts AML advisory expertise & upcoming webinar on preparing for changes

Bell will provide key expertise on upcoming Government regulation and help UK law firms to prepare and implement these policies.

She has over 12 years’ experience advising law practices across the UK and globally, helping firms to adapt to the changing legal landscape and adopt best practice in implementing compliance procedures. This includes providing training and support for everyone in the firm on how to apply these risk management principles to improve client service and deliver maximum efficiency.

Brian Boehmer, Partner of Lockton’s Solicitors Practice said: “We are thrilled to have Amy on board. She brings with her extensive knowledge and experience within this sector, particularly the changing regulation on Anti-Money Laundering and GDPR, as well as a whole host of other regulation on the horizon. We look forward to offering our clients the opportunity to learn and engage with us on these changes with a range of topical events, videos and articles, including our ‘Prepare for the biggest changes to AML in a decade’ webinar in June.”

“I’m delighted to be working with Lockton, as a client, I found their commitment to helping firms manage risk is unrivalled” said Bell. “I’m excited to join the team and help their clients navigate through the changes ahead”.

Bell is the Chair of the Law Society’s Money Laundering Task Force, where she represents the Solicitors profession at Government and in Europe. Her work in the last 18 months has been focused on the implementation of the 4th EU Money Laundering Directive and she has been heavily involved in discussions regarding these new Regulations. She is also the author of the Law Society’s Anti-Bribery Toolkit.

Socrates v The Law Society at Competition Tribunal Ruling

Conveyancing training revisited after competition tribunal ruling

26 May 2017

The Law Society of England and Wales today announced it will look again at the training elements of its Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) in response to a ruling by the Competition Appeal Tribunal.

The tribunal found that for a short period  – from April 2015 – the Law Society should have permitted third party trainers to offer some of the modules for the scheme. CQS has been running since 2010.

Only one of the modules that concerned the tribunal was still provided  – the Financial Crime module – and that has now been withdrawn.

Law Society president Robert Bourns said: “For the vast bulk of the time CQS training has been available it has been compliant with competition rules. I am certain that in setting CQS up, the Law Society acted in good faith and in the public interest.

“The purpose of CQS – and its effect – was to ensure greater consumer choice in terms of practitioners available to undertake this important work.

“We note the decision and have and will take steps to avoid similar issues in the future.

“Purchasing a house is the biggest investment most people make, and they need to feel confidence in the process, as do lenders. That was always our motivation – CQS has never been about profit.

“We are grateful to the tribunal for their guidance on changes to CQS that they make in their ruling and we will be looking at their comments as a matter of priority in the coming days.”

Socrates v The Law Society Judgment

LeO to invite live chats

Clients offered live chats with ombudsman

LeO offers its ‘live chat’ service from disputes with claims management companies to all legal service providers.

Live chat, which is available at www.legalombudsman.org.uk, coincides with a three-year plan by the ombudsman

to improve the ease of consumers making and resolving complaints. The service runs from 9am to 5pm.

Chief legal ombudsman Kathryn Stone said: ’Modernising our systems with live chat should fit better into people’s busy

lives and make it much easier for consumers to seek support about poor service from the legal industry and get the

advice they need.

People often don’t know where to turn when they have issues with legal providers, but we want them to know that

we are here for them online as well as just a phone call or email away.’

The ombudsman accepted 7,223 legal complaints and 2,290 CMC complaints for investigation in the past financial year.

Compliance Survey

We are conducting a survey of your accreditation and quality standards and would be delighted if you can enter the Compliance Survey

SRA IT Security Facts

SRA issued important IT security facts

IT security – keeping money and data safe

The facts

Laptop image£1 billion  was lost to business from online crime (2015-2016)

£2.3 billion was lost by global businesses from email fraud (2013-2015)

75% of cybercrime reports to us are Friday afternoon fraud

£1.57 million was paid by businesses in ransoms (2016: Q1)

43% of all cyber attacks are aimed at small businesses

9 security breaches in 2015 featuring more than 10million personal records being exposed

Sources: Action Fraud, CRN, FBI, Symantec IT security – keeping money and data safe

SRA Cybersecurity update and Risk Outlook

Leading experts discuss cybersecurity risks to coincide with our spring update to the Risk Outlook.

There was general agreement that law firms are an attractive target for criminals not only because they can hold large amounts of money but also valuable client information. Three key themes from the roundtable were that:

  • Too often cybersecurity is viewed as just an IT risk. It is a business risk that requires engagement and ownership at a senior management and Board level. Training staff is important, but businesses also need to develop a culture where cybersecurity is treated as a serious priority.
  • People and processes are as crucial as technology. Law firms should consider having rigorous and unambiguous procedures for when clients notify them of any changes to their personal information or bank details during a transaction.
  • The use of unsupported software increases an organisation’s vulnerability. In addition to addressing this risk, businesses should also consider the benefits of implementing Cyber Essentials – a Government-backed scheme to help organisations protect themselves against common cyber attacks.

Our roundtable involved leading agencies and experts from a range of sectors to discuss how businesses can tackle the risks of cybersecurity. As well as us, there were representatives from the Information Commissioners Office, Barclays, Advent IM, National Crime Agency, IASME & UK Cyber Forum, bgi.cyber.uk ltd, Pelican Underwriting, QBE Insurance, Cyber Strategies, PA Consulting and Microsoft.

The roundtable coincides with the publication of our spring update to its Risk Outlook, which highlights seven priority risks for the legal sector. It shows that three quarters of all cybercrimes reported to us involve email modification fraud. Half of all such reports are email modification frauds against conveyancing proceeds. It says any field of work which involves client money is at risk, with probate another common target.

We are committed to taking a constructive and engaged approach with firms when they fall victim to cybercrime. However, the risk update does highlight that we will take action where firms are not proactive. For instance it has this year issued rebukes in cases where a firm has failed to report the loss of client money or been slow to remedy client losses.

Paul Philip, SRA Chief Executive, said: “We all benefit from information technology, but that means we are all vulnerable to cybersecurity risks. These risks evolve rapidly. Whether it is money or sensitive client information, law firms are an obvious target. It is the job of firms to take steps to protect themselves and their clients, but we want to help.

“So in addition to regular updates and conversations with firms, we also want to make sure we learn from insights across all sectors. It was clear from our roundtable how similar the issues are. By working together we will be in much better place to stay cybersecure.”

The update of the Risk Outlook is available here:

Go to the update

We published a detailed report into the IT security at the end of 2016:

Go to the paper