Record keeping is an essential component of any successful system. The records of the identity of clients, and their transaction activities, will sometimes be the only available evidence to assist law enforcement authorities in the detection, investigation and prosecution of illicit flows of funds and the subsequent confiscation of those criminal funds.
Ensure that all relevant information is readily available and that reporting under the FIC Act is not delayed due to a lack of available information.
The FIC Act does not prescribe the manner in which records must be kept.
Implementing an appropriate record management system
AI’s must ensure that:
- they have easy and free access to the records;
- the records are readily available to the FIC, as the supervisory body, when required;
- the records can be reproduced in a legible format; and
- the FIC is provided with the details of the third party who is storing the records if they are stored off-site.
The period for which records must be kept
Section 22 requires that all records in respect of the establishment of a business relationship must be kept for a period of at least five years calculated from the date when the business relationship was terminated.
- Section 22A requires that all records of transactions concluded must be kept for at least five years as from the date on which the transaction in question was concluded.
- Records of a transaction or activity giving to a section 29 report must be kept for at least five years as from the date on which the section 29 report was submitted to the FIC.
- AI’s must keep records which, to their knowledge, relate to ongoing investigations until such time as the relevant law enforcement agency has confirmed in writing that the matter has been finalised.
The FIC Act does not require reports to be made on suspected crimes or unlawful conduct by a person (apart from money laundering and terror financing activities
An accountable institution is prohibited from dealing with an anonymous client or a client with an apparent false or fictitious name. In such cases, the accountable institution should obtain and record at least some information describing the identity of the client even if that information does not have to be verified.