'Know Your Customer' Takes on New Meaning

Lora Bentley

In the banking and financial services industries, there are anti-money laundering provisions in place that require organizations to know their customers and be able to report suspicious transactions. It's a small part of the broader war on terror. But it seems businesses in those industries aren't the only ones that must watch with whom they do business.


Dark Reading editor Tim Wilson says companies that do business with terrorists or identity thieves could face fines in the six-figure range or could see their officers go to prison. He says:

If you're a security pro, you might be familiar with the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) requirements, which basically require companies to check their customers' identities against a list of known terrorists to prevent them from unwittingly providing products or services to an enemy....


However, you may not have heard yet about the Federal Trade Commission's "Red Flag" program...The program, which takes effect Nov. 1, requires enterprises to check their customers and suppliers against databases of known online criminals.

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